Low voter turnout a reality for big Indian cities

IBNLive.com
Feb 16, 2012 at 09:00pm IST

New Delhi: It seems that words are not transforming into action for big Indian cities when it comes to participating in large numbers to vote their favourite candidates in polls. Despite a high urban base with more discerning and affluent electorate, witnessing a low turnout in elections, local or general, is adage for these cities.

Notwithstanding the hue and cry made through promotional activities and advertisements, cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai and Ahmedabad hardly believe in exercising their franchise to elect 'right' candidates in the municipal corporations polls, as shown by the low voting percentage each time.

Polling for 10 municipal corporations across Maharashtra, including Mumbai, to decide the fate of 1,244 candidates, on Thursday witnessed 46 per cent turnout.

Low voter turnout a reality for big Indian cities

The BMC polls on Thursday witnessed less than 40 per cent turnout.

Not only Mumbai, but most of the other developed cities have a similar story. BBMP (Greater Bangalore Metropolitan Corporation polls) in March 2010 witnessed less than 45 per cent of the total 67 lakh voters. Affluent areas in Bangalore witnessed less than 35 per cent voting, and in some elite areas less than 25 per cent.

Similarly, the last GHMC (Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation) polls saw less than 46 per cent voting. Rich areas like Red Hills (29 per cent) and Jubilee Hills (39 per cent) witnessed a very low turnout.

Among others, Greater Chennai Corporation polls in October 2011 had 48 per cent votes where rich areas stayed away and Voting was below 35 per cent. Delhi MCD polls in 2007 witnessed less than 40 per cent voting. Less than 35 per cent of South Delhi voted. Ahmedabad witnessed just 44 per cent voting in 2010.

On the contrary, Chandigarh Corporation polls in 2010 witnessed 60 per cent voting, the highest among all developed cities in recent years. Kolkata City Corporation polls in 2010 also witnessed the highest voting percentage of 65-70 per cent for socio-economic reasons.

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