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LS polls: NCR Delhi records 59.8 + pc voter turnout

LS polls: NCR Delhi records 59.8 + pc voter turnout

New Delhi, May 12 (UNI) An estimated 59.8 plus per cent turnout of the 1.43 crore electorate was recorded till 1800 hrs on Sunday for seven Lok Sabha constituencies of Delhi NCR.

Voting started on a slow note but picked up later during the day at the 13,819 polling stations of the Capital under a heightened security presence.

President Ram Nath Kovind and several well-known politicians, including External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Indian National Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal cast their vote in the Capital.

Chandni Chowk recorded 61.54 per cent voter turnout, North East Delhi (59.42 pc), East Delhi (57.44 %), New Delhi (55.01 per cent), North West Delhi (SC)--56.07 pc, West Delhi ( 56.77 per cent) and South Delhi ( 54.41 per cent).

The stars

President Kovind, former Delhi Chief Minister and Congress candidate from North East Delhi Ms Sheila Dikshit, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia of the Aam Aadmi Party and Bharatiya Janata Party nominee from East Delhi Gautam Gambhir were among the early voters.

Mr Kovind cast his vote at a polling booth in the Rashtrapati Bhawan. Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu, just back from his state visit to Vietnam and his wife, Usha, exercised their franchise at Nirman Bhawan polling booth.

Ms Dikshit cast her vote at a polling booth in Nizamuddin while Mr Sisodia at a polling station in Pandav Nagar.

Gautam Gambhir exercised his franchise at a polling booth in Old Rajinder Nagar.

Ms Swaraj also cast her vote at NP Co-Ed Senior Secondary School at Aurangzeb Lane.The UPA chairperson exercised her franchise at a polling booth in Nirman Bhavan.

The Congress president cast his vote at a polling booth in NP Senior Secondary School in Aurangzeb Lane. Mr Gandhi was accompanied by former Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken while Ms Gandhi by Sheila Dikshit.

The Aam Aadmi Party national convenor Arvind Kejriwal cast his vote at a booth in Civil Lines.

Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal, and his family, also exercised their franchise and urged citizens to come and vote. 'Voting is our right and responsibility. I urge you all to exercise this right!," Mr Baijal tweeted.

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and hubby Robert Vadra cast their votes at a booth in Sardar Patel Vidyalaya at Lodhi Estate.

Among others, who took part in the finest hour of the world's biggest democratic exercise, were Mr Maken, Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari, BJP's New Delhi candidate Meenakshi Lekhi and AAP east Delhi candidate Atishi.

Former President Pranab Mukherjee exercised his franchise at a polling booth in NP Primary School, K Kamraj Lane.

Senior Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Prakash Karat exercised his franchise at a polling booth in Sanchar Bhawan.

NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora also voted.

Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa exercised his franchise at a polling booth in Nirman Bhawan.

IAF chief’s wife and son also cast their votes.

Well-known cricketer Kapil Dev exercised his franchise at a polling booth in DPS Mathura Road along with wife Romi and daughter Amiya.

Generational shift

The polls witnessed a turnout of voters of every age group. The Capital saw its oldest voter, 111-year old Bachan Singh exercise his franchise at Sant Garh polling booth at Tilak Vihar. He was taken inside the polling station on a wheel chair.

Among the women, 110-year-old Ram Pyari Shankhwar, resident of Kondli area of East Delhi, also participated in the democratic exercise.

Bollywood celebrities Swara Bhasker, Sidharth Malhotra, Taapsee Pannu and Huma Qureshi on Sunday exercised their franchise at polling booths here and appealed to people to vote for India.

AAP nominee for South Delhi, Raghav Chadha, alleged that there was bogus voting at a polling booth in a school in Tughlakabad area.

He accused his BJP rival Ramesh Bidhuri of these tactics.

Mr Chadha claimed that AAP volunteers identified some people and caught one of them red-handed who voted more than once after removing the ink from his finger.

'Massive rigging and bogus voting incidents reported at Govt Boys Sr Sec School in Tughlakabad. Our volunteers have again unearthed the fraud. Election officers and Police are in connivance with BJP,' Mr Chadha tweeted.

Earlier in the day, AAP Malviya Nagar MLA Somnath Bharti in a series of tweets had alleged that

some of the EVMs in his area were not functioning.

'EVM in booth 132, Hauzrani is showing 50 votes without anyone casting any vote in the machine n EVMs at booths 116,117, 122 in Malviya nagar not functioning,' the AAP MLA tweeted.

'Booth 113 in Dashmesh Khalsa school, Malviya Nagar in AC43 polling has stopped because EVM is not working,' he tweeted. 'Booth 69 in MCD school, Masjid Moth in AC43 polling has not started because EVM is not working,' the AAP MLA tweeted.

Stepped-up vigil

Increased police presence was visible across the megapolis in view of the elections.

According to the police, there were no reports of any violence and the polling was peaceful.

Around 61,000 police personnel had been deployed along with 47 additional companies of the Central Armed Police Forces in tandem with Delhi Police.

There were 450 critical polling booths this time where the police will keep more vigil.

The elections in the NCR were seen as a three-way contest between the Aam Aadmi Party, Bharatiya Janata Party and Indian National Congress.

The fate of 164 candidates was decided in the seven LS constituencies.

In several booths across the Capital, voters had reached before 0700 hrs. Delhi Metro services started from 0400 hrs to enable the staff deployed on election duties to reach their polling stations. The trains going from Dwarka Sector 21 towards Vaishali started operations at 0430 hrs.

In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the BJP had won all the seven seats.

Counting of votes of the Lok Sabha elections 2019 will be taken up on May 23, Thursday.


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