BBMP polls underway, Bengaluru records voter turnout of 11 % till noon

BBMP polls underway, Bengaluru records voter turnout of 11 % till noon

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) election, to elect a new council of corporators to govern the City for the next five years, is underway.

According to media reports, only 11% of voters have turned up to cast their vote till noon.
Around 7,33,645 denizens have cast their vote so far, as per reports.

Till 9:30 am, only 4.5 percent of voters had turned up for casting their vote.

Voting has been delayed at several wards due to malfunctioning of the EVMs. The polling, which started at 7 am, will go on till 5 pm today.

As many as 197 corporators of the total 198 to represent that many wards, need to be elected. A BJP nominee has already been declared elected unopposed from Hongasandra ward. There are 1,120 contestants in the fray. In all, 17 parties have fielded 721 candidates and the remaining 399 are contesting as Independents.

It is to be seen whether the citizens will come out and vote in large numbers in this election. Voter turnout in the last election held in 2010 was just 44 per cent. The total electorate is 73.88 lakh.

The Congress party, which is holding the reins of the State had fielded candidates in all the wards. However, nomination of one of the candidates was rejected helping the BJP to win unopposed. The BJP, which was in power in the BBMP council for the last five years, have fielded candidates for all the wards. The JD(S) has not fielded candidates for 10 wards.

Electronic voting machines will be in use. Voters should be enrolled in the electoral rolls and produce any of the 22 government-issued cards at polling booths as identity proof to vote. Voter identity cards, known as EPIC, is not mandatory.

BBMP officials on poll duty and political parties have distributed voter slip indicating the polling booth of the individual voter in each ward.
 
Even those who have not received the slip may vote, provided they produce the government approved ID cards.

The indelible ink mark, also known as voter’s ink, will be marked on the left thumb.
If repolling is necessitated, it would be held on August 24 from 7 am to 5 pm. The counting of votes would be from 8 am on August 25.

Post 1990, the party in power in the state, had held the reins of administration in the Palike as well. It remains to be seen whether the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government would create history again. So far the Palike has not seen coalition governance.  For Siddaramaiah, the stakes are high in these elections. He has been fighting to shed his  ‘anti-Bengaluru’ image. He had become the face and voice of the party during the campaign.

In case of the BJP, MLA R Ashoka played a key role in selection of candidates. Former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy was the lone key campaigner for the JD(S).
 

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