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55% Mumbaikars voted for BMC elections in 2017, highest in 25 years

55% Mumbaikars voted for BMC elections in 2017, highest in 25 years
55% Mumbaikars voted for BMC elections in 2017, highest in 25 years

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The elections for the cash-rich Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, which went to polls today, saw unprecedented rise in voter turnout, with 55 percent of the eligible population casting their vote. The turnout was the highest in the last 25 years.

During the previous civic body election in 2012, the turnout was 44 percent. In comparison, the turnout for the 2017 polls was roughly 10 percent more and highest since the last five elections.

Voter turnout for Mumbai throughout the day was:

As of 9:30 am: 8.07 percent
As of 11:30 am: 16.4 percent
As of 1:30 pm: 32.1 percent
As of 3:30 pm: 41.32 percent
Final tally: 55 percent

The preliminary turnout estimates were released by the State Election Commission around 9 pm on Tuesday. The earlier estimates can be found here.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis thanked the people of Mumbai for coming out to vote. “Thank you #Mumbai for the record voting percentage & people from all Municipal Corporations & ZP for participating in festival of democracy!” he tweeted.

Although the country’s commercial capital and the richest civic body has generally recorded a dismal voter turnout, officials were hopeful of a change this time around.

A generous dose of glamour, glitz and power play was visible in Mumbai at the 7,304 booths to elect 227 BMC corporators from among 2,275 candidates.

In 2012, Shiv Sena had won 75 of the 227 seats, with the BJP winning 31, the Congress 52 and the NCP 13.

Controlled by the Shiv Sena and BJP for four terms, the BMC has a budget of Rs 37,052 crore for the current year (2016-2017) catering to a population of around 18.30 million.

The partners were unable to form an alliance this year due to differences over seat sharing.

As a result, the poll has become a major prestige battle with CM Fadnavis and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, both of whom have led their parties from the front.

Apart from Mumbai’s BMC, nine major civic bodies, 11 Zilla Parishads and 118 Panchayat Samitis across Maharashtra also went for polling today.

The voter turnout for the nine remaining municipal corporations was –

Thane: 58%, Ulhasnagar: 45%, Nashik: 60%, Pune: 54%, Pimpri Chinchwad: 67%, Solapur: 60%, Amravati: 55%, Akola: 56% and Nagpur: 56%.

Votes will be counted on Thursday (February 23).

Related: Ward-wise split of voter turnout in Mumbai


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