Maharashtra records lowest turnout in final phase of polls

Mumbai: Maharashtra recorded a voter turnout of 57.32 per cent in the fourth and final phase, covering 17 parliamentary constituencies, which is the lowest compared with all the earlier phases so far, Election Commission (EC) officials said here on Tuesday.

In the first phase on April 11, the percentage in the seven seats that voted was 61.81, and in the second phase on April 17, the turnout was 62.91 percent for 10 parliamentary seats.

In the third phase on April 23, the voter turnout was 62.36 per cent for 14 seats, followed by a dismal 57.32 percent for the final phase of elections for 17 seats, including the six seats in the country’s commercial capital, held on April 29.

Nandurbar (reserved for STs) Lok Sabha seat led with the highest voter turnout — 68.31 per cent — while Kalyan in Thane district recorded the lowest at 45.28 per cent.

Besides Nandurbar, the voting percentages in the other reserved constituencies were also on the higher side: Dindori (ST) 65.76 per cent, Palghar (ST) 63.72 per cent and Shirdi (SC) 64.54 per cent.

Among Mumbai’s six seats, Mumbai North notched the highest turnout at 60 per cent. Bollywood actress Urmila Matondkar, contesting on a Congress ticket, is pitted against BJP MP Gopal Shetty in this seat.

The lowest turnout was recorded in Mumbai South at 51.46 per cent. Former Union Minister Milind M. Deora is contesting against Shiv Sena’s Arvind G. Sawant from here.

The voting figures in the other constituencies in the city were: Mumbai North East (56.85 per cent), Mumbai South Central (55.23 per cent), Mumbai North West (54.23 per cent) and Mumbai North Central (53.64 per cent) per cent.

Among the other urban and semi-urban centres in the state, Bhiwandi recorded a turnout of 53.07 per cent, while in Thane, which had the highest number of electorate, only 49.21 per cent came out to vote.

The farmer dominated constituencies with a rural-urban mix such as Maval notched a turnout of 59.49 per cent, followed by Nashik (59.43 per cent), Shirur (59.40 per cent) and Dhule (56.68 per cent).

Interestingly, the Maoist-infested Gadchiroli-Chimur seat notched the highest percentage voting in the state in 2019 – 71.98 percent, and Kalyan adjacent to Mumbai was lowest at 45.28 percent, the EC said.

This time, a staggering 309,233 handicapped persons voted in the state for whom special arrangements including provision of wheelchairs were made by the EC.

Beed Lok Sabha constituency had the highest figure of 39 candidates, while there were only five contenders contesting each in Gadchiroli-Chimur and Dindori (ST) seats.

There were a total of 97,640 polling stations, up by 8,161 compared to 2014, which were manned by 850,000 officials and secured by 104,000 security personnel in the elections.