70 pc overall voting turnout recorded in K'taka bypolls

Source: UNI | Published on 31st October 2021, 11:27 AM | State News |

Bengaluru:  Around 70.76 per cent voter turnout was recorded for the bypolls in Hanagal and Sindgi assembly constituencies on Saturday.

The voting began with technical glitches in EVMs, delaying the polls by 90 minutes in some polling booths in both the constituencies.

Technical glitches in EVMs at Devanagaon polling booth No. 12 in Sindgi were noticed, which left the voters harried and election observers perplexed.

Election officials were quick to look for options to rectify the glitches.

Delay in voting also was reported at three polling stations in Hanagal assembly constituency. The voting for both the seats began at 7 am and continued till 7 pm.

The counting of votes will take place on November 2.

The bypolls were necessitated following the death of JDS' MLA MC Managuli from Sindgi and CM Udasi belonging to the BJP from Hanagal.

By 5.23 pm today, 77.90 per cent voter turnout was recorded in Hanagal and 64.54 cent in Sindgi.

Earlier, the candidates in the fray had cast their votes. Notably, the Congress candidate Srinivas Mane, before casting his vote in Hanagal constituency, offered prayers at a Dargah.

Revati Udasi, who was a strong BJP aspirant for contesting the bypoll for Hanagal seat, also cast her vote with family.

The byelection is Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai's first major electoral challenge after assuming the coveted post.

Retaining Hanagal seat is very important for Bommai to strengthen his position as a political organiser in the party. Also is a prestige issue for the chief minister as Hanagal falls in his home district, from where he had won the Shiggaon assembly seat, which is in Haveri district.

The BJP has fielded Ramesh Bhusanur and Shivaraj Sajjanar, in Sindgi and Hangal constituencies, respectively, while the Congress is betting on Ashok Managuli and Srinivas Mane in the same seats.

Though MC Managuli defeated Bhusanur on a JDS ticket by a thin margin in the last assembly election, his son Ashok Managuli is fighting the bypoll on a Congress ticket after joining the party.

The JDS, on the other hand, has fielded two Muslim candidates in both the seats, creating a political storm in Congress circles.

The Congress alleged that the fielding of Naziya Shakeel Ahmed Angadi and Niyaz Shaikh in Sindgi and Hanagal, respectively, would split the votes of Muslims and benefit the BJP candidate.

However, JDS leaders HD Deve Gowda and HD Kumaraswamy blamed Congress leaders including Siddaramaiah and DK Shivakumar for spliting the Muslim votes by calling their party as the B-Team of the BJP.

Totally, there are 4,39,148 eligible voters and 560 polling stations.

As many as six candidates are in the fray in Sindagi and 13 in Hanagal constituencies. Two candidates from Sindgi are women.

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