Voting for all the 40 constituencies in Mizoram concluded on Wednesday, 28 November with 80 percent voter turnout. The state saw a dip in the turnout compared to previous elections - 83.41 percent in 2013 and 82.35 in 2008.The state is the last bastion of Congress in the Northeast, where the party is eyeing a third consecutive term.The main rivals, the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Mizo National Front, are looking to make serious inroads into the 40-member Assembly.Mizoram Assembly Election 2018: The Stats That Matter7,70,395 people are expected to cast their votes in the northeastern state.The Congress and the main Opposition, MNF, have fielded 40 candidates each, while the BJP is contesting from 39 seats.The Zoram Peoples Movement (ZPM), an alliance formed by two political parties and four groups, is contesting from 35 seats.In 2013 Assembly elections, the Congress won 34 seats, while the Mizo National Front (MNF) had five and Mizoram People’s Conference bagged one seat.Mizoram: BJP Dark Horse in Traditional Congress-MNF Battleground?(The Quint will no longer be on WhatsApp, owing to changes in its policies regarding news publishers. You can now get the latest news updates on our Telegram channel. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram.)The election machinery is fully prepared to conduct free and fair polls, the state's Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Ashish Kundra said. Speaking to reporters, Kundra said he was "perfectly satisfied" with the arrangements.The Election Commission has decided to hold polling for Bru refugees in Mizoram's Mamit district, even as the leaders of the tribal community maintained that they fear for their safety in their home state.Preparations are underway ahead of voting on Wednesday, 28 November.Polling for the 40 constituencies in Mizoram will begin at 7 am on Wednesday, 28 November.Voting for all the 40 constituencies in Mizoram has begun. Polling will conclude at 4 pm, news agency ANI reported.Rajya Sabha MP and former president of Delhi BJP took to Twitter to appeal to young voters, asking them to "turnout in record numbers and cast their vote" for the Mizoram Assembly elections.As polling began in Mizoram on Wednesday, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Amit Shah took to Twitter to encourage citizens to come out and vote. "Your one vote will lay the foundation of a prosperous and corruption-free Mizoram," he tweeted.As polling began in Mizoram on Wednesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to Twitter to urge people of Mizoram, particularly “dynamic youth [...] to turnout in large numbers and vote.”Polling is underway in the Zarkawt-II, Aizawl and Kanhmun constituencies.Chief Electoral Officer Ashish Kundra told ANI that preparations have been made for 12,026 Bru refugees, who are lodged in six relief camps in Tripura, to cast their votes for the Mizoram polls at Kanhmun village in Mamit district, where 15 temporary polling stations have been set up.A 92-year-old woman was seen waiting in line to cast her vote in the Lunglei constituency.As polling for the 40 seats continue across the state, the Congress have urged the people of Mizoram to “exercise their right” to vote for “growth and development”.An elderly Bru refugee was seen casting her vote in the Kanhmun constituency of Mizoram.Chief Minister of neighbouring state Biplab Kumar Deb has urged voters to come out in large numbers and cast their vote in the Mizoram and Madhya Pradesh polls. Tripura is also where the Bru refugees, whose original home was Mizoram, had escaped to in 1997, following a series of ethnic clashes.According to The Times of India, every Assembly constituency has a ‘pink’ polling station – which is managed completely by women polling officials and security personnel. These have been created to draw female voters to cast their vote.Just to recap- in the last elections held in 2013, the Congress had managed to bag 34 seats with a vote-share of 45 percent, while the MNF had won only five seats and a vote-share of 29 percent. The BJP, meanwhile, had contested 17 seats, but not won even one.Congress President Rahul Gandhi, in a tweet, urged those casting their vote in Mizoram to vote for “peace, prosperity and progress”.“Your vote is not just your constitutional right, it is a blessing and a weapon. Use it wisely today,” he said.A 15 percent voter turnout in Mizoram was recorded till 9 am, ANI reported.Many Brus were seen turning up to vote in the Kanhmun constituency, where temporary polling stations have been set up.Earlier in the day, Young Mizo Association, a famous NGO, readied the welcome gate on Bailey bridge across Lankaih river- which marks the Mizoram and Tripura border.Former chief minister and opposition Mizo National Front (MNF) chief Zoramthanga, who is contesting the elections, was among the first ones to exercise franchise at 7am.Zoramthanga cast his vote at Ramhlun polling booth in Aizawl North-II constituency.According to the Election Commission, 47 of 1,179 polling booths have been classified as 'critical' and as many as 'vulnerable'.Voters had to walk around 500 metres from the interstate border to reach the polling stations, where members of local civil societies welcomed them with pork curry, PTI reported.Speaking to Reuters, BJP President John V Hluna said that he wasn't satisfied with the party’s central leadership, as he didn’t think they had given the state enough importance or support in the time leading up to the elections.Not satisfied. They are not coming (to the state) like we want them to and our sentiment is almost hurt by it ... No national leader has visited my constituency. We do feel we are not given enough importance.John V Hluna to ReutersHe also said that the biggest problem the party faces in the state, is it being perceived as a “Hindutva” party who will persecute the Christians.Polling officials checked the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and other necessary inputs, at a distribution centre at Treasury Square, in Aizawl, even as voting continued across the rest of the constituencies in the state on Wednesday.Earlier, elections officials had said that the malfunctioning of several EVMs had been found in some polling booths and had been replaced.Around 25 per cent of the 7,68,181 voters cast their votes by 10 am, Deputy Additional Chief Electoral Officer C C Lalchhuangkina told IANS over the phone, quoting reports from all eight districts.A 29 percent voter turnout was recorded across all eight districts in the first four hours of the Mizoram polls, ANI reported.The Chief Electoral Officer, Ashish Kundra, confirmed that 42 VVPATs, 25 ballot units and 19 control units had been replaced in various polling stations.He also told PTI that he hoped the turnout of Bru voters would be "substantial".A 49 percent voter turnout was recorded across polling in all districts, by 1 pm. Polling is expected to conclude at 4pm.A 106-year-old woman in Kawrthah and a 108-year-old man in Zemabawk North went to cast their vote in the respective districts on Wednesday.Three polling officials, including two presiding officers, in Mizoram's Lunglei district were removed from their duties after they were allegedly found in an inebriated state, attempting to assault other officials.The three persons were removed from the election duties with immediate effect and authorities concerned were asked to initiate departmental enquiries against them, a senior official at the office of the Chief Electoral Officer told PTI.As confirmed by the office of the Chief Electoral Officer, Ashish Kundra, about 58 percent of voter turnout was recorded till 3 pm in Mizoram, ANI reported.Voting for all the 40 constituencies in Mizoram concluded on Wednesday, 28 November with 80 percent voter turnout. The state saw a dip in the turnout compared to previous elections - 83.41 percent in 2013 and 82.35 in 2008.