Around 50 pc voter turnout in BBMP polls

Around 50 pc voter turnout in BBMP polls

Only half of the 73.88 lakh voters in City exercised their franchise in the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) elections held on Saturday.

BBMP Commissioner G Kumar Naik, who is also the district election officer, said the polling trends suggest that the voter turnout could be around 50 per cent, which is quite encouraging. “We have received details from only 40 to 45 of the 197 wards and are still getting information on other wards. The compilation of data may take some more time,” he said.

Barring a freak accident in which a 25-year-old voter died when a tree branch fell on him in Shivajinagar, and a 70-year-old died of a heart attack after casting his vote in Vrushabhavathinagar, the polls were peaceful. In the first-ever elections held to the enlarged BBMP areas in 2010, the voter turnout was just 44 per cent.

The polling was peaceful barring minor skirmishes between supporters of political parties in JJ Nagar, Yelahanka New Town, KR Puram, Mahalakshmi Layout and a few other areas. At Begur ward, Congress party candidate M Anjanappa made a forced entry into a polling booth flashing his party flag after 5 pm when the polling officers were winding up their work and got two votes cast. The polling officers and constables watched helplessly as Anjanappa reportedly threatened them.

Voter killed

Fayaz Ahmed, a footwear shop owner, was killed when a branch of a tree crashed on him when he went to cast his vote in Shivajinagar. Septuagenarian Narayanappa, resident of Vrushabhavathinagar, breathed his last after voting.

While voter apathy was evident all over the City, the Who’s who of Kannada tinsel world showed up in large numbers to exercise their right. As in every other election in recent years, complaints of missing names in voters’ list was reported from many areas.

While the ward-wise polling data is yet to come out, Palike sources said high voting was recorded in Kempegowda ward (56.25), Chowdeshwari Ward (56.36), Dodda Dommasandra (52.8) and Yelahanka Satellite Town (52.58). Polling was abysmally low in Bagalakunte (34.7 pc), Thanisandra (37.08) and Attur (45.63). There was low turnout in the morning, mainly due to rain in some areas.

The counting of votes will take place on August 25 at 27 centres. Counting of votes will begin at 7 am and results are expected to be out by afternoon. After the polling, the Electronic Voting Machines were shifted to these centres under heavy police escort.

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