People cast their votes in Bhutan on Thursday

Guwahati: Bhutan went to polls on Thursday for its third National Assembly to decide which party will lead the tiny Himalayan nation for the next five years. More than 4.38 lakh registered voters are expected to cast their valuable votes for the 47-member National Assembly, Election Commission (EC) secretary Dawa Tenzin was quoted as saying by media reports.

The Indo-Bhutan border gate at Jaigaon in West Bengal has been closed due to the ongoing elections in the Himalayan kingdom

While speaking to the media, EC spokesman Sonam Tobgyal said, “There is immense interest and enthusiasm among the people across the 20 districts of the country and we are expecting a good turnout this election.”

The elections will be a prime deciding factor between the royalist Druk Phuensum Tshogpa and the center-left Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa parties. The preliminary round of elections held in September this year resulted in a shocking defeat for the ruling People’s Democratic party of present prime minister Tshering Tobgay. The first ever election held in this Buddhist kingdom was in March 2008, which marked an end to the century-old monarchy of the king.

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