Nearly 36,000 voters did not find any candidate suitable enough to get their vote and pressed ‘None of the Above’ (NOTA) option.
Interestingly, most of these have been from the rural belt of the capital.
According to data obtained from the Election Commission of India, 35,924 votes — 0.4 per cent of the total votes polled — chose NOTA.
The Assembly constituency with the highest number of NOTA votes is Matiala in Southwest Delhi, where 1,102 voters chose the option.
This is followed by Karawal Nagar in Northeast Delhi with 888 and Bawana in Outer Delhi with 870 NOTA votes.
Continuing the trend from the last Assembly election, Matia Mahal in Old Delhi had the lowest NOTA votes — 203 — as compared to 296 last year.
In certain Assembly constituencies this year, where the winning margins were not too high, NOTA votes might have played a crucial role.
In Najafgarh, INLD candidate Bharat Singh lost to AAP’s Kailash Gehlot by 1,500 votes. Najafgarh polled 535 NOTA votes. Similarly, BJP’s CM candidate Kiran Bedi lost to AAP’s S K Bagga by merely 2,000 votes in Krishna Nagar, where 358 NOTA votes were polled.
It was a close shave in Rohini too where AAP’s C L Gupta was defeated by 5,000 votes by BJP’s Vijender Gupta — 557 votes were NOTA.
Interestingly, the top seven constituencies with the highest number of NOTA votes this year have been from the rural belt of the city.
Matiala, which tops the chart at 1,102, saw a rise in NOTA votes from 636 in the last Assembly election.
Karawal Nagar and Bawana, which followed, saw a decline in NOTA votes from 911 to 888 and from 1,217 to 870 votes respectively.
Kirari, Narela and Rithala — other rural constituencies with substantial agricultural land — which touch the border with Haryana also saw high number of NOTA votes being polled this time. While NOTA votes went up in Kirari from 534 to 840, they declined in Narela from 971 to 767 and in Rithala from 1023 to 705.