At 70 per cent turnout, Karnataka’s on a high

Bengaluru: After a high octane campaign over several weeks, over 70 per cent of the five crore electorate of the state voted in  Saturday’s assembly poll.

Speaking to reporters here, Chief Electoral Officer, Sanjeev Kumar said  the polling was peaceful in the state barring  a 58-year-old man dying of cardiac arrest in a hospital after collapsing in a polling station in Belthangadi taluk and a 58-year-old woman in Haveri trying to immolate herself at a polling station to protest the lack of infrastructure in her village. 

Jagadish Shettar and H.N. Ananth Kumar after casting votes in their respective constituencies on SaturdayJagadish Shettar and H.N. Ananth Kumar after casting votes in their respective constituencies on Saturday

“She did pour kerosene on herself, but  was overpowered by the police and polling station officials and after counselling, she cast her vote and left,” he said.

Noting that over 2,600 candidates were in the fray including 2,400 men and over 200 women, he said that the total number of voters, including service electors were 5,06,90,538, of whom 2,56,75,579 were male , 2,50,09,904 female and 5,055 transgender.

Of the 58,008 polling stations across the state,12,002 were labelled “critical”, and over 3,50,000 polling personnel were on duty during the day.

Admitting there were some issues with Ballot Units (BU), Control Units (CU) and VVPATs, he claimed  the failure percentage of  0.33  for BUs, 0.59  for CUs and 1.2  for VVPATs was not too bad as far as malfunctioning gadgets went.

In response to a question, he said the Election Commission had decided to hold a re-poll for one polling station in Hebbal,on May 14 as button number nine in the BU got stuck after 63 votes were cast.

Just hours before the election, the Election Commission on Friday  postponed the voting in Bengaluru’s Rajarajeshwari Nagar (RR Nagar) to May 28, after nearly 10,000 voter ID cards were found in a flat in the constituency. 

Voting for Jayanagar constituency in Bengaluru too has been postponed owing to the death of the Bharatiya Janata Party candidate and sitting legislator.

The votes will be counted for 222 of the 224 seats on May 15. 


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