ECI appeals to voters of Gujarat to come out in large numbers during second phase to compensate for low voting in 1st phase
DEC 3, 2022
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Surat, Rajkot and Jamnagar have recorded lower than State average of voter turnout of 63.3% in first phase of Gujarat elections. While voting percentage increased in many constituencies, the average voter turnout figure is dampened by urban apathy of these important districts just as during recently concluded general election to the legislative assembly of Himachal Pradesh, urban Assembly Constituency of Shimla recorded the lowest at 62.53% (less by 13 percentage point) as against the State average of 75.6%. Gujarat cities have shown the similar urban apathy trend during voting on 1st December 2022 in Assembly elections thus pulling down the percentage of voting in first phase.
Noting the voter turnout figures with concern, CEC Sh Rajiv Kumar, on behalf of ECI, appeals to the voters of Gujrat to come out in large numbers during second phase so as to compensate for low voting in 1st phase. The possibility of surpassing 2017 voting percentage now lies in their increased participation only.
The Gandhidham AC in Kuchchh district, which has industrial establishmentsrecorded lowest polling percentage of 47.86%,a sharp decline of 6.34% than the last election in 2017, recording a new low. The second lowest voting was in Karanj constitutency of Surat, which is also 5.37 % lower than its own low of 55.91% in 2017.
Major cities/ urban areas of Gujrat have not only recorded decline in voting percentage as compared to 2017 elections, but have also voted much less than State average of 63.3%. Decline in Rajkot west is very sharp at 10.56%.
|District||Assembly Constituency||VTR in 2017||VTR in 2022||% decrease|
The voting percentage in the first phase of election in 2017 was 66.79%. Had the voting percentage in these Assembly Constituencies been even equal to level of even their own voting percentage in 2017 election, the state average would have been more than 65%.
There is a conspicuous gap in voting turnout between rural and urban constituencies. The gap of voter turnout is as wide as 34.85% if it is compared in rural constituency of Dediapada in Narmada district which has recorded 82.71% and that in urban AC of Gandhidham in Kuchchh district which has witnessed 47.86% of voter turnout. Also, average turnout in important urban areas is lower than turnout in rural constituencies.
Within manydistricts, rural constituencies in those districts have voted much more than the urban constituenciesof the same district. For example-in Rajkot, there is a decline in all the urban ACs.
|Assembly Constituency||VTR in 2017||VTR in 2022||% increase/decrease||Type of constituency|
Similarly, in Surat all rural Assembly Constituencies have voted more in %age terms than urban Assembly Constituencies of Surat. The difference in lowest urban AC of Surat with highest rural AC is as much as 25%.
|Assembly Constituency||Voting % in 2022||Type of constituency|
All the 26 ACs which recorded more than 65 % voting are rural and not even one urban AC has crossed the mark of 65% voting.
|Sr. No.||Name of district||Name of AC||Voter Turnout in 2022|
To address the urban apathy trend across the country, theCommission has directed all CEOs to identify low voter turnout ACs and Polling stations to ensure targeted awareness interventions to increase voting percentage. Recently also CEC ShRajiv Kumar along withEC Shri Anup Chandra Pandey,interacted with Nodal Officers of over 200 Voter Awareness Forums from various industrial units in Pune, which has earned the tag as one of the lowest voting percentage Parliamentary Constituenciesin 2019 general elections.