Haryana and Maharashtra today recorded a voter turnout of 76 and 64 per cent respectively in assembly elections which are being seen as a major test for the fledgling government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Centre.
Haryana voters today came out in large numbers to exercise their franchise as the Congress-ruled state witnessed an all time-high voting percentage of 75.8 in the Assembly polls.
Election authorities, in revised figures, said according to preliminary estimates about 75.8 per cent of total 1,63,18,577 voters used their franchise to elect their representatives at 90 Assembly seats out of total 1,351 candidates, including 116 women.
‘About 75.8 per cent of the more than 1.63 crore electors exercised their right to vote in Haryana up to 7:30 pm as polling was held for general elections in the state today thus breaking the previous record of maximum polling of 72.65 per cent in the year 1967,’ state’s Chief Electoral Officer Shrikant Walgad said adding that that the statistics were preliminary. He said by and large the polling was peaceful, but some sporadic incidents of violence were reported from some parts of the state.
An estimated 64 per cent of Maharashtra’s 8.35 crore voters today cast their ballots in a bitterly-fought election that pollsters said will throw up a hung Assembly with BJP emerging as the single-largest party but falling short of a majority in the 288-member House. Approximately 64 per cent polling has been recorded by 6 PM. The exact details are being worked out, sources in the office of the state’s Chief Electoral officer said.
The poll, considered the first major test of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity after Lok Sabha election, passed off peacefully. Prominent among those whose electoral fate will be decided when counting takes place on Sunday include former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, his deputy and senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar, state BJP president Devendra Fadnavis, Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Eknath Khadse, his counterpart in Legislative Council Vinod Tawde (both BJP), Shiv Sena leader in the outgoing Assembly Subhash Desai and his MNS counterpart Bala Nandgaonkar.
Polling started on a brisk note, slowed down around noon but again picked up and about 55 per cent of the electorate had cast their votes by 5 PM, officials said.
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