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Presidential polls: Over 99% of 4,796 electors cast votes; 100% turnout in 10 states, 1 UT

Going by the support extended by various parties, National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate Droupadi Murmu has a clear edge over Opposition's Yashwant Sinha in this election.

Narendra Modi; Amit Shah; Manmohan Singh; Mamata Banerjee cast votes. (PTI and Express Photos)

Voting for the Presidential polls concluded on Monday with over 99 per cent of 4,796 eligible electors, including 771 MPs and 4,025 MLAs, taking part in the process. With President Ram Nath Kovind’s tenure ending on July 15, the polling to elect India’s 15th President was held at 31 locations including the Parliament House and various state Assemblies across the country between 10 am to 5 pm.

Going by the support extended by various parties, National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate Droupadi Murmu has a clear edge over Opposition’s Yashwant Sinha in this election.

Here are the highlights from polling day

◼️ The Parliament House on Monday recorded 98.90 per cent voter turnout at the end of the polling for the Presidential election that concluded at 5 pm. Addressing the media after the voting, Returning Officer PC Mody said of the 736 electors, comprising 727 MPs and nine MLAs, permitted by the Election Commission to vote at the Parliament house, 728 (719 MPs and nine MLAs) have caste their votes. Counting of votes will take place on July 21.

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◼️ Prime Minister Narendra Modi was among the first to cast his vote at the Parliament House followed by the BJP President JP Nadda. Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi also cast their votes at the House.

◼️ Former prime minister Manmohan Singh arrived in Parliament on a wheelchair to cast his vote to elect the 15th President of India. The 89-year-old Congress veteran has been keeping unwell ever since he tested positive for Covid-19 last year, and has been away from the limelight since. In October 2021, he was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) after he complained of weakness following fever. Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav also arrived to cast his vote on a wheel chair. He was accompanied by his brother Ram Gopal Yadav. An ailing Mulayam Singh Yadav, 82, has been in an out of hospital in the last year due to various illnesses. BJP leader Pradipta Kumar Naik, who is the leader of opposition in the Odisha Assembly, arrived on a wheel chair with an oxygen cylinder directly from the hospital where he was admitted for post-Covid complications.

◼️ Voting also took place in state assemblies across the country. A 100% voting was recorded in 10 states, namely, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram, Sikkim and Tamil Nadu, and also in the Union Territory of Puducherry.

◼️ In Maharashtra, 283 out of 287 MLAs cast took part in the voting process held at the Maharashtra Vidhan Bhavan in south Mumbai. BJP legislator Laxman Jagtap, who is unwell, Shiv Sena MLA Mahendra Dalvi, a member of the rebel camp led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, and jailed NCP lawmakers Anil Deshmukh and Nawab Malik did not vote. Though the state Assembly has 288 seats, its current strength is 287 after one seat fell vacant after the death of Shiv Sena MLA Ramesh Latke a few months ago.

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◼️ Meanwhile, in Punjab, Shiromani Akali Dal MLA Manpreet Singh Ayali boycotted the presidential poll, alleging that a number of issues related to the state continue to remain unresolved. He also claimed that his party leadership did not consult him before deciding to back NDA candidate Droupadi Murmu. The Dakha MLA said he spoke to voters and workers in his constituency, and took the decision considering the sentiments of the ‘Panth’.

◼️ The sole MLA of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) in the Gujarat Assembly, Kandhal Jadeja, voted for Droupadi Murmu, the candidate put up by the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). NCP is an ally of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) in Gujarat. Speaking to media persons after casting his vote, Jadeja said he voted for the BJP candidate. Following this, Gujarat NCP president Jayant Patel ‘Bosky’ has sought an explanation from Jadeja.

◼️ Jharkhand NCP MLA Kamlesh Singh took many by surprise after he announced to have voted for NDA presidential nominee Droupadi Murmu. Singh said he went by his “conscience call” while casting his vote.

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◼️ The Election Commission of India implemented some salient features to ensure secrecy of voting and free and fair election. For example, Unique Serial Numbered pens of violet ink were supplied centrally so that no other instrument is used by the voter for marking of preference of vote. Special posters on use of such pens and dos and don’ts for electors were also provided,  for display at polling stations.

First published on: 18-07-2022 at 08:06:14 pm
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