Polling peaceful in politically sensitive Bangalore Rural

The Election Commission’s efforts to keep a vigil on proceedings at sensitive polling stations through webcasting and deployment of paramilitary forces seems to have yielded results in Bangalore Rural district which witnessed peaceful polling on Sunday.

Introduced after the successful experiment during the recent Gujarat Assembly elections, webcasting has played a crucial role in elections in politically-sensitive Bangalore Rural district.

In the Hoskote constituency, webcasting facility was provided at Hoskote town and Bendiganahalli, the native village of the BJP candidate and Labour Minister B N Bache Gowda.

According to the local police, the Bendiganahalli booth had witnessed serious trouble during the past elections. Therefore, the Election Commission had installed the webcasting there to prevent untoward incidents. Similar arrangements were made at five booths each in Devanahalli, Doddaballapur and Nelamangala constituiencies.
According to the returning officers of these constituencies, the measure helped a lot in constant monitoring of the booths.

“You can see the behavioural change in people when they see a camera watching them. We have telecast every minute detail of the happenings along with recorded footages,” said H Amaresh, returning officer, Nelamangala.

The presence of paramilitary forces deterred political party volunteers who usually indulged in proxy voting or influenced voters by standing near the booths at villages such as Sulibele, Alapppanahalli, Kammasandra, Theniyur, Thimmapannahalli and other places in Hoskote taluk.

Volunteers venting their anger against paramilitary personnel was common in Vijayapura, Kundana and other parts of Devanahalli constituency. At Nelamangala town, there was an  altercation between the political party workers and the paramilitary forces.

Missing names

Despite scorching sun, women turned up in large numbers to cast their votes, particularly in Hoskote. In Attibele booths No. 59, 60, 54, 57, women stood in long queues.

In Vijayapura, people were complaining that their names were missing from voters’ list. According to them, 400 names were missing from the list. They blamed some local leaders for it.

At Doddaballapur, a woman was complaining to authorities that some one has cast her vote. However, officials were found expressing their helplessness.  

Technical problem with EVMs slowed down voting at a booth in Devanahalli town, while four faulty EVMs were replaced at a booth in Hoskote on Saturday night.

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