Voters in India's Punjab state cast peaceful vote for change
February 7, 1997
Web posted at: 6:15 EST (2315 GMT)
CHANDIGARH, India (CNN) -- Voters in India's northern state of Punjab turned out in heavy numbers Friday for elections that were widely expected to eject the Congress Party from power. The state's chief electoral officer said voting had been peaceful, bolstering the government's claim that the local secessionist movement had been crushed.
Officials said the elections to the Punjab state legislature were the first in two decades that were not overshadowed by violence from Sikh separatists opposed to Indian rule in Punjab. India ordered 100,000 paramilitary soldiers to oversee the voting. Police tightened security and sealed the border with Pakistan.
Reuters contributed to this report.