Heavy voter turn-out on expected lines: Congress

Inside Haryana: Former cricketer Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi at a polling booth in Pataudi on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: Photo: PTI

Special Correspondent

People voted for a change, claims INLD chief Chautala

CHANDIGARH: The ruling Congress in Haryana said on Tuesday that the heavy turn-out of voters, exceeding 70 per cent, in the 12th Haryana Vidhan Sabha elections was quite on the expected lines.

A spokesman of the party claimed that it “is a positive vote for growth, peace and continuity which means the Congress Government”.

He said even diehard critics of the Congress regime led by Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda had conceded in the run-up to the polls that there was no such thing as anti-incumbency against it.

Quoting experts, he said the heavy polling, especially when the anti-incumbency factor was non-existent, was indicative of a vote of confidence in the policies and programmes of the government of the day. It was a “positive mandate for the performance of the Congress Government and rejection of the divisive and sectarian politics pursued by the Opposition”.

“It is a vote for growth and development which constituted the cornerstone of the Hooda regime,” he added.

Meanwhile, former Haryana Chief Minister and Indian National Lok Dal chief Om Parkash Chautala thanked the people of the State “for the overwhelming support to the party candidates”.

He also condoled the death of Jyoti Ram, who was allegedly killed by Congress workers in an election-related violent incident at Hemu Majra village in Guhla constituency. The deceased was an election agent of Independent candidate Kulwant Bazigar.

Mr. Chautala said the massive support lent by all sections of the people in all parts of the State during the election campaign and polling trends indicated that they had “bestowed the mandate in favour of the INLD”.

He claimed that “people came out in large numbers and voted for a change to oust the Congress from power due to unprecedented inflation, unemployment, hollow announcements and corruption”.

Alleging that the Congress had sensed its defeat in the elections as it “adopted certain cheap pressure tactics to intimidate the voters from casting their votes”, he charged that Congress workers had kidnapped INLD activist Surender in Garhi Sampla-Kiloi where Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda is contesting.

Meanwhile, INLD secretary-general Ajay Singh Chautala alleged that Congress activists had tried to capture booths in different parts of the State. He also demanded “re-polling” at these booths.