The seven phase polling in current Assembly elections of Uttar Pradesh have touched the figure of 59 per cent that is highest in the history of 16 Assembly as well as 15 Lok Sabha elections held in the most populated state so far.
In current electoral roll,there are 12.58 crore electors including 6.92 male and 5.65 female. The total electors were 11.35 crore in 2007 assembly elections and 11.60 crore in 2009 Lok Sabha elections. During the summary revision that took place in December 2011,around 1.23 crore voters increased in the electoral roll. Increase in youth voters to 55 lakh and their participation also added to high poll percentage.
The second highest polling was reported in 1993 Assembly election when 57.13 per cent voters had exercised their franchise. It was first election after demolition of Babri mosque in Ayodhya on December 6,1992. Another highest polling of 56.44 per cent in UP was recorded in 1977 Lok Sabha election when there was a wave of Jayaprakash Narayan (JP) movement.
Unlike the 1993 Assembly and 1977 Lok Sabha elections,there has been no such strong wave in favour or against any political outfit in the current elections.
In 2009 Lok Sabha polls,the polling percentage was 48.79 in phase 1; 45.26 per cent in phase 2; 44.85 per cent in phase 3; 44.29 per cent in phase 4; 46.85 percent in phase 5; 50.24 per cent in phase 6 and 54.44 per cent in phase 7. The overall polling in the entire election was 47.79 per cent. 46.07 per cent polling was recorded in 2007 Assembly polls when 48.42 per cent voters exercised their franchise in phase 1; 43.42 per cent in phase 2; 42.56 per cent in phase 3; 43.84 per cent in phase 4; 47.57 per cent in phase 5; 46.58 per cent in phase 6 and 50.99 per cent in phase 7.
UP Chief Electoral Officer Umesh Sinha said: The polling percentage in the current assembly elections is the highest in the history of UP. Voters awareness and facilities provided to them in registration of name in electoral roll and at polling booths have been key factors behind high turnout. While clamping anti-social elements,the EC created an atmosphere that increased transparency in the electoral exercise and developed confidence in voters, he added.
About the increased turn out of women voters,Sinha said: The number of female voters in electoral roll had been low in the past elections. In the summary revision before current 2012 polls,registration of women voters in electoral roll was increased by engaging staff of Anganwadi,ASHA,Mahila Mangal Dal and other NGOs.
The 2012 Assembly election is significant also because no incident of poll-related violence was reported during the entire electoral process.