70% turnout in Karnataka Assembly elections

Source: PTI | By Sajjad Qazi | Published on 12th May 2018, 9:33 PM | State News | Don't Miss |

Bengaluru: The Karnataka assembly elections saw a 70 per cent voter turnout on Saturday, the Election Commission said here.  

The last assembly election in 2013 had witnessed 71.4 per cent polling, it said. 

The polling figure is likely to go up as some voters were still queued up at the polling stations after 6 pm. 

Voting was held in 222 out of 224 seats in a three-cornered contest among the ruling Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party and former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda's JD(S). 

Over 2,600 candidates are in the fray — more than 2400 men and and over 200 women. There are a total of 5,06,90,538, voters of whom 2,56,75,579 male voters, 2,50,09,904 female and 5,055 transgender voters.

Counting of votes will take place on May 15. 

According to them, the highest polling was recorded in Chikkaballapura and Ramanagara at 76 per cent, while Bangalore Urban had the lowest at 48 per cent.

Voting began at 7am and continued on a moderate to brisk note, poll officials said.

Congress and BJP workers were locked in minor scuffles at some places, accusing each other of trying to bribe the voters, the officials said. 

During the 2013 Assembly elections, the voter turnout was 71.45 per cent.

State BJP chief and party's chief ministerial candidate B.S. Yeddyurappa, and Pradesh Congress Committee President G.Parameshwara were among the first to cast their votes at Shikaripura in Shivamogga and Yaggere in Tumakuru respectively.

Former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda along with wife Chennamma cast their votes at Paduvalahippe in Hassan district.

While Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, along with son Yatindra, cast his vote around 1pm in his native Siddaramanahundi under the Varuna constituency in Mysore, state Janata Dal (Secular) chief and former chief minister H.D. Kumaraswamy and his wife Anita cast their votes at Ketaganahalli in Ramanagara.

Siddaramaiah, who offered prayers at the local temple before casting his vote, is contesting from neighbouring Chamundeshwari and Badami in Bagalkote district of north Karnataka, while his son is contesting from Varuna, from where the chief minister had contested and won in 2008 and 2013.

”My son Dr Yatindra Siddaramaiah & I have cast our vote in Varuna today. Karnataka voters as always will display political maturity & will begin a change that our country needs the most. Please go out & vote for an inclusive & peaceful Karnataka. #KarnatakaVoting (sic),” the chief minister tweeted after casting his vote.

Sri Shivakumara Swamiji, the 111-year-old seer of a prominent Lingayat seminary, Siddhaganga Mutt, also cast his vote at a booth near the mutt premises.

Cricketer Rahul Dravid, another cricketer Anil Kumble, film actors Ramesh Arvind, Ravichandran and the scion of the Mysuru royal family Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar were among the early voters.

Technical glitches in the electronic voting machines delayed polling at several places in Bangalore.

Election for the Jayanagara seat in Bangalore has been countermanded following the death of BJP candidate and sitting legislative assembly member B.N. Vijaykumar.

The Election Commission has also deferred the polls at Rajarajeswari Nagar to May 28, after a massive row erupted over a large number of voter ID cards being found from an apartment in the constituency.

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