Haryana Municipal Election Results 2018 HIGHLIGHTS: BJP clean sweeps all five citieshttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/haryana-municipal-election-results-2018-live-updates-bjp-congress-independents-5500001/

Haryana Municipal Election Results 2018 HIGHLIGHTS: BJP clean sweeps all five cities

Haryana Municipal Corporation MC Election Results 2018 HIGHLIGHTS: While Congress has extended its support to the Independent candidates, the BJP is fighting the election on its party symbol. 

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Haryana Municipal Election Results 2018 HIGHLIGHTS: The counting of votes began this morning.

Haryana Municipal Corporation MC Election Results 2018: The Bharatiya Janata Party has emerged as a clear winner in the Haryana Municipal Elections. Leading in Panipat since morning, BJP’s Avneet won the city against Anshu Pahwa by a margin of 74,000 votes. Counting of votes in the five municipal corporations and two municipal committees in Haryana began this morning.

The elections, which were held on Sunday, saw a voter turnout of over 69 per cent. The polls for Mayor and ward councillors took place in five towns — Rohtak, Karnal, Hisar, Panipat and Yamunanagar apart from ward councillor polls for two Municipal committees — Jakhal Mandi in Fatehabad and Pundri in Kaithal district. Jakhal Mandi recorded 89.5 per cent, while it was 82.1 percent in Pundri town.

In a first for the state, the mayors of the five municipal corporations will be elected directly. Earlier, the councillors used to elect the mayor. In another significant move, the Haryana Election Commission had decided to treat ‘none of the above’ or NOTA option as a “fictional candidate” in the municipal polls, making it a must for winning candidates to secure more votes than those cast for NOTA. While the Congress has extended its support to the Independent candidates, the BJP is fighting the election on its party symbol.

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BJP has won in all five municipal corporations of Haryana. Follow HIGHLIGHTS

Overall percentage in elections was 69.39%

The municipal elections assume significance as they have been conducted in the run up to the 2019 Lok Sabha and Assembly polls. The voting for civic polls took place on Sunday in the home towns of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar (Karnal) and former Chief Ministers Bhupinder Singh Hooda (Rohtak) and Bhajan Lal (Hisar) also. State Election Commissioner Dalip Singh stated that the overall percentage in these elections remained 69.39 per cent. Also, 62.7 per cent voting was seen in the Municipal Corporation Hisar, 61.8 per cent in Karnal, 62 per cent in Panipat, 62.4 per cent in Rohtak and 65.2 per cent in Yamunanagar.

BJP wins in all five cities, massive victory in Panipat

The counting that began in the morning concluded with BJP's win in all five cities including Hisar, Karnal, Panipat, Rohtak and Yamunanagar. Securing the last seat in Rohtak, Man Mohan Mohan won against Sita Ram by a margin of 14,776 votes. Maintaining a lead since morning, BJP candidate Avneet won in Panipat against Anshu Pahwa with a whopping 74,940 votes, while thumping a victory in Yamunanagar, Madan Singh emerged victorious against Rakesh Kumar by a majority of 40,678 votes. In Hisar, BJP candidate Gautam Sardana led with 28,091 votes against Congress supported Rekha. BJP's Renu Bala won against Asha Wadhwa by a margin of 9348 votes.

BJP wins all 5 cities, Rohtak goes to BJP

Securing the Rohtak seat as well, BJP clean sweeps all five cities. BJP candidate Man Mohan won against Sita Ram by a margin of 14,000 votes. 

BJP ahead in Rohtak

Heading for victory in Rohtak, BJP leads with Man Mohan against Sita Ram by a margin of 17,000 votes. In Rohtak, while BJP MLA Manish Grover, a minister in Khattar government, belongs to the Punjabi community, the party’s mayoral candidate is Manmohan Goyal from the Aggarwal community and son of former minister Seth Shri Krishan Dass. And former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has offered support to an Independent, Sita Ram Sachdeva, from the Punjabi community.

BJP secures Hisar seat

BJP clean sweeps Hisar as well. BJP candidate Gautam Sardana won the seat against Rekha with a margin of 28,000 votes. 

BJP wins Yamunanagar seat

BJP clean sweeps Yamunanagar as well. BJP candidate Madan Singh won the seat against Rakesh Kumar with a margin of 40,000 votes

Thumping victory in Panipat for BJP

BJP's Avneet who maintained a lead since the beginning today, won the Panipat seat with a margin of 74,940 votes. Congress backed Independent candidate Anshu Pahwa won 51,381 votes

Karnal goes to BJP, Renu Bala declared winner

Renu Bala is declared as the Mayor of Karnal. She secured 69,960 votes as opposed to Independent candidate Asha Wadhwa. Last round of counting is also underway in Panipat, where BJP backed Avneet is racing ahead with a margin of nearly 75,000 votes

NOTA a 'fictional'candidate in Haryana Municipal Election

In a significant move, the Haryana Election Commission has decided to treat 'none-of-the-above' or NOTA option as a "fictional candidate" in the polls, making it a must for winning candidates to secure more votes than those cast for NOTA. If in the election, all the contesting candidates individually receive less votes than those cast for the fictional candidate, NOTA, none of the candidates will be declared elected. The polls will be cancelled and held afresh," the Election Commissioner said.

This is the first time that NOTA will be treated as a fictional electoral candidate in the electoral history of India. If a contesting candidate and the NOTA both receive equal valid votes, the candidate, and not the fictional candidate, shall be declared elected

BJP ahead in Yamunanagar

In Yamunanagar, BJP's Madan Singh is leading with over 27,000 votes. Rakesh Kumar is trailing behind with 38,845 votes

BJP leads in Hisar

BJP candidate Gautam Sardana has maintained a lead by 20,453 votes from his nearest rival Rekha Aeran, who was backed by Congress, in Hisar mayoral polls. Hisar is home town of former Chief Minister late Bhajan Lal. Lal's son Kuldeep Bishnoi and former minister Savitri Jindal had supported independent candidate Rekha Aeran in the civic body polls.

In Bhupinder Hooda's hometown, BJP races ahead

In Rohtak, which is hometown of former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the BJP candidate Manmohan Goyal is leading by a margin of less than 5,000 votes against Congress backed Sita Ram

Haryana Municipal polls - High stake battle for BJP?

After the recent electoral losses in the five states, the civic polls are seen as a prestige issue for the ruling BJP. Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had campaigned extensively for party nominees in these polls. While the Congress chose not to use party symbol to contest the polls, it lend support to some Independents. In Karnal, Khattar's home constituency, INLD-BSP and the Congress had thrown their weight behind Independent candidate Asha Wadhwa.

Tight security for Haryana polls

Security was heightened ahead of polls in Haryana. Haryana Director General of Police B S Sandhu had earlier said the entire police administration was fully geared up to conduct free, fair and peaceful elections.

To ensure fair polling, Haryana police deployed strength of 7,016 personnel on poll-duty including 825 lady constables, 3,007 constables, 1,049 head constables,620 non-gazetted police officers, 86 Inspectors and 27 gazetted police officers.

“As many as 3,921 polling officers, 1,292 presiding officers, 146 supervisors, 83 duty magistrates, 781 reserved staff have been deployed for the elections. Election shall be conducted using EVMs for which about 1,685 control units and 2,959 ballot units are to be used”, the spokesman had said before the polls

59 candidates contested for Mayor in Haryana Municipal polls

Fifty-nine candidates, including 40 men and 19 women, contested the election to the seats of mayor, and 592 candidates (322 men and 270 women) contested the election to the municipal corporation. A total of 89 candidates (35 men and 54 women) contested the election to the municipal committees in Jakhal Mandi and Pundri.

Of the 14,01,454 electorate eligible to cast their vote using EVMs, 7,44,468 were men and 6,56,986 women. Polling was held for 136 wards for the seats of mayor and members of municipal corporations and municipal committees, an official spokesperson of Haryana State Election Commission said earlier. 

Voter turnout dropped in Haryana Municipal Election 2018

Heavy polling was recorded in the two municipal committees of Jakhal Mandi (89.5 per cent) and Pundri (82.1 per cent). 

In the municipal corporations, 62.7 per cent polling was registered in Hisar, 61.8 per cent in Karnal, 62 per cent in Panipat, 62.4 per cent in Rohtak and 65.2 per cent in Yamuna Nagar, State Election Commissioner Dalip Singh said. However, the poll percentage in these corporations dropped slightly in comparison with the elections held last time. He said the poll percentage in these five municipal corporations in 2013 was 70 per cent.

Poll panel to look into ‘Punjabi CM’ ad

Meanwhile, a controversy broke out on a full page advertisement of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar in Karnal. Opposition parties accused the BJP of "seeking votes on caste lines," ven as the BJP leaders appeared distancing themselves from the advertisement.

The advertisement appeared in local editions of Hindi dailies in Karnal on Sunday. The advertisement read: “52 sal me mila Haryana ko pahla Punjabi Mukhyamantri agar aaj galati ki to 60 sal me fir mauka nahi milega. Ajad partyashi ke kandhe par bandhook rakhkar Punjabi samuday ke mukhyamantri ko hatana chahate hain kuch jati vishesh ke neta. Punjabi samaj ke logo ka anurodh Punjabi mukhyamantri ka khulkar karen samarthan. (It is for the first time that Haryana has got a CM from the Punjabi community in 52 years of its inception . If you make a mistake today, you won’t get such chance in the next 60 years. Some people from a particular caste want to remove the Punjabi CM by firing from the Independent candidate’s shoulder. It’s a request from the Punjabi community to openly support the Punjabi CM).”

The advertisement had photos of Khattar, PM Narendra Modi and Karnal BJP mayoral candidate Renu Bala Gupta, who is from the Aggarwal community. An Independent candidate Asha Wadhwa is Gupta’s poll opponent. Congress and INLD-BSP alliance had backed Wadhwa, who is a Punjabi.

Haryana State Election Commissioner Dalip Singh told The Indian Express that the advertisement “seems objectionable”. “We will look into it tomorrow,” he said. Read more

BJP in a huge lead in Panipat

In Panipat, BJP's Avneet is leading with a huge margin of over 33,650 votes. While the BJP candidate has 56,794 votes, Anshu Pahwa is trailing behind with 23,144 votes in her kitty. Seema Saini, is currently at the third place with 3970 votes

Close contest in Manohar Lal Khattar's hometown Karal

In Karnal, hometown of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, the contest is close between BJP's Renu Bala and Asha Wadhwa. The margin between both the candidates is less than 2500 votes. Six rounds of counting are already up

BJP's Gautam Sardana leads in Hisar

In Hisar, BJP candidate Gautam Sardana is currently leading with 13,744 votes. Congress supported candidate Rekha, is trailing behind with 6,921 votes. Four rounds of counting have been completed. 

No EVM complaints received during municipal polls in Haryana: EC

Elections to the municipal corporations of Karnal, Panipat, Yamunanagar, Rohtak and Hisar and municipal committees of Jakhal Mandi in Fatehabad and Pundri in Kaithal were held on December 16. Haryana State Election Commissioner Dalip Singh told The Indian Express that they have not received a single complaint from any part of the state while the elections were underway. “Hundred per cent EVMs remained functional during the voting for the civic body polls,” he said.

Welcome to the live blog. Counting is underway in Haryana for the five municipal corporations and two municipal committees. Follow this space track all the latest news

The INLD-BSP alliance and Congress had supported an Independent mayoral candidate Asha Wadhwa to take on BJP candidate and outgoing Mayor Renu Bala Gupta in Karnal. In other four towns also, the Congress supported Independent mayoral candidates as it did not contest the polls on party symbol. The INLD-BSP alliance fielded its candidates for mayoral polls in four towns.

State Election Commissioner Dalip Singh stated that the overall percentage in these elections remained 69.39 per cent. Also, 62.7 per cent voting was seen in the Municipal Corporation Hisar, 61.8 per cent in Karnal, 62 per cent in Panipat, 62.4 per cent in Rohtak and 65.2 per cent in Yamunanagar.