Gender gap among electorate narrows
With an impressive turnout of 71.29 per cent, Sunday’s polling in the Legislative Assembly elections was the highest in the last 35 years, just marginally lower than 71.9 per cent polling recorded in the 1978 elections. The Election Commissions campaigns to enthuse people to vote, combined with the many non-official “go-vote” initiatives appear to have paid off. ‘
The polling was 6.5 percentage points higher than in the 2008 elections (64.78), and significantly higher than the turnout in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections (58.88 per cent).
The polling percentage in the 28 constituencies of Bangalore Urban district, that has traditionally seen voter apathy attributed to the large migrant population that has not sunk its roots in the city, was an encouraging 57.38 per cent against 49.87 per cent in 2008 Assembly and 45.81 per cent in 2009 Lok Sabha polls.
The highest polling was recorded in Chickballapur district at 83.5 per cent. The more-than-80-per-cent club includes Bangalore Rural (82.49), Kolar (81.47) and Ramanagaram (82.94).
The gender gap in voting was narrowed significantly in this election with 70.1 per cent of women voters exercising their franchise compared with 71.84 male voters.
The percentage of polling by male and female voters in 2008 Assembly elections was 66.33 and 63.23, respectively. A total of 50.97 per cent and 45.6 per cent of male and female voters exercised their franchise in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections.
“We are very satisfied with the voter turnout. We started with a low base of 65 per cent and crossed 70 per cent,” Chief Electoral Officer Anil Kumar Jha told presspersons here on Monday.
Nearly 10 per cent of voters exercised their franchise in the last one hour on account of various reasons, including summer conditions. “There are several reasons for high turnout during last hours of polling but nothing unusual about it,” the CEO said.