Poll percentage put at 70

M. Malleswara Rao

HYDERABAD: Narsapuram Parliament constituency registered the highest voting of 77 per cent and Kurnool the least at 61.5 per cent, among the 20 Lok Saha constituencies where the second phase of polling was conducted on Thursday.

Chittoor and Eluru constituencies recorded the second highest polling at 75 per cent and Machilipatnam ranked third with 74.43 per cent.

Election authorities put the average polling for the 20 constituencies at 70 per cent provisionally. The percentage may change slightly once the polling recorded during the extended hours at 500 odd booths after 5 p.m., is taken into consideration for reckoning.

An interesting aspect is that the polling was low in five out of eight constituencies in Kurnool, Kadapa, Anantapur and Chittoor districts in Rayalaseema region, revolving around an average of 65 per cent, indicating voters’ indifference to the elections.

The poor turnout of voters in the region may reverse the expectation of political parties and candidates.

On the other hand, the polling recorded in 12 Lok Sabha constituencies in the South Coastal Andhra was heavy, with seven out of them showing up a percentage crossing 70 per cent. This high polling in this region which reflected a new enthusiasm among the voter to cast their votes, too has its own implications on the results.

The polling percentages in the 20 Parliamentary constituencies are: Kakinada 69, Amalapuram 72, Rajahmundry 67, Narsapuram 77, Eluru 75, Machilipatnam 74.43, Vijayawada 69.71, Guntur 73.14, Narasaraopet 71.68, Bapatla 70.1, Ongole 67, Nandyal 64, Kurnool 61.5, Anantapur 66.8, Hindupur 72.1, Kadapa 67.1, Nellore 66, Tirupathi 66.5, Rajampet 73 and Chittoor 75. The voting percentage under the first phase was 69.75 per cent. Compared to the percentages of the present elections, the percentages recorded under the Phase I polling in 2004 elections was 67.96 and it was 72.29 under the second phase.

Poll code till May 28

The code of conduct for the elections will continue till May 28 when the full process of elections will come to a close after counting of votes and announcement of results on May 16.

Chief Electoral Officer I. V. Subba Rao said the code would continue to be enforced especially against carrying of cash from one place to another. A senior election official explained that this was to prevent political parties and candidates to reward the voters with cash for favours done during polling. In view of the strict vigil maintained against carrying of cash so far, resulting in seizure of Rs. 35 crore, some parties and candidates promised to give the money to voters after conclusion of polling.

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