State records 81 pc voting in GP polls

The State government's decision to make voting compulsory does not seem to have made much of a difference in the recent gram panchayat (GP) elections.

This time, the State clocked an average of 81 per cent polling against the 80 per cent recorded in the 2010 elections. Re-polling in two districts – Tumakuru and Yadgir – is scheduled for Thursday. The State Election Commission (SEC) will declare the overall polling percentage after Thursday, said State Election Commissioner P N Srinivasachari.

Sources in the Rural Development and Panchayat Raj (RDPR) department said the SEC did not have much time to publicise and create awareness among people about compulsory voting. Besides, people have not taken it seriously in the absence of a penal provision, said the sources.

Among the districts, Bengaluru Rural recorded highest polling of 89.38 per cent, followed by Ramanagar at 88.54 per cent and Chikkaballapur at 88.04 per cent in the second phase of the elections held on Tuesday. Lowest polling of 73.62 was recorded in Yadgir, followed by Bengaluru Urban at 73.71 per cent and Kalaburagi at 76.25 per cent. The counting of votes is scheduled to be held on June 5.

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