March 1, 2021 2:37:17 am
Around 50.86% voters turned out to vote in the MCD bypolls for five wards in the capital on Sunday. Special arrangements had been made for Covid positive voters, however, none turned up, said Delhi Election Commissioner S K Srivastava.
Voting was held in two wards — Rohini-C and Shalimar Bagh (North) — in the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) and three wards — Trilokpuri, Kalyanpuri and Chauhan Banger — in the East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC). While Shalimar Bagh (North) is reserved for women, Trilokpuri and Kalyanpuri are reserved for the Scheduled Caste (SC) category.
Results will be declared on March 3. Delhi will see elections to all 272 MCD wards in 2022.
Amid the pandemic, thermal guns were used to measure temperature of all voters, and masks and sanitiser bottles were provided at the polling stations.
“There was total 50.86% voting in five wards. Voting was higher in the EDMC wards (56.92%) than in the NDMC wards (44.05%). Overall, 50.53% men and 51.15% women voted in the elections,” said Srivastava.
He said out of 35 total registered transgender voters, seven came out to vote.
“We had allotted a special time slot from 4.30 pm to 5.30 pm for Covid positive voters, but not even one person turned up. Around 10 of them had registered. We, instead, used that time to allow those who had entered the polling booth within the time limit to cast their vote,” said Srivastava.
The highest voting (59.19%) was in Kalyanpuri ward where the main candidates are Dhirendra from AAP, Siyaram Kanojia from BJP and Dharampal Maurya from Congress.
The lowest (43.23%) was in Shalimar Bagh (North) which fell vacant after the death of the BJP councillor. Here the contest is between BJP’s Surbhi Jaju, AAP’s Sunita Mishra and Congress’s Mamata.
Rohini-C , Trilokpuri and Chauhan Banger saw 44.58%, 55.95% and 55.60% voting respectively.
“There could be several reasons for higher voter turnout in the EDMC wards. The population there is higher, and people live in closer proximity to the polling areas. The voters there may also be more aware,” said Srivastava.
Polling began at 7.30 am and ended at 5.30 pm. Around 2.42 lakh people were eligible to cast their votes in these elections, in 327 polling stations. A total of 26 candidates across parties are in the fray.
The BJP has been controlling all three corporations since 2012, when the MCD was trifurcated into North, South and East corporations. In the 2017 elections, BJP won 181 seats, AAP won 48 and Congress got 30 seats.
In May 2016, bypolls were held for 13 wards, with the AAP winning five seats, Congress winning four and the BJP winning three seats. An independent candidate won the remaining ward. The voter turnout then was 45.90%.
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