Election News

Island city polled the least in the state

ElectionThe city’s apathetic voters could take lessons from the rural pockets of Maharashtra. The voter turnout in Mumbai's island city--home to some of the most affluent people in the country--was the lowest in the state according to figures released by the Election Commission (EC) on Wednesday.

The voter turnout in rural Maharashtra was higher than that in big cities.

Final polling figures released by the EC revealed that Naxal-affected Gadchiroli in Vidarbha recorded a high voting percentage of 64.85 per cent while Mumbai city was at 43.23 per cent. The turnout in suburban Mumbai was 47.16 per cent.

Island city polled the least in the state

ElectionThe city’s apathetic voters could take lessons from the rural pockets of Maharashtra. The voter turnout in Mumbai's island city--home to some of the most affluent people in the country--was the lowest in the state according to figures released by the Election Commission (EC) on Wednesday.

The voter turnout in rural Maharashtra was higher than that in big cities.

Final polling figures released by the EC revealed that Naxal-affected Gadchiroli in Vidarbha recorded a high voting percentage of 64.85 per cent while Mumbai city was at 43.23 per cent. The turnout in suburban Mumbai was 47.16 per cent.

A brave story of an old voter

Aau Pednekar, an 83-year-old resident of Shivaji Park, cannot walk without support. She also has poor vision and needs an escort to guide her.

But she insisted on voting in the Assembly elections on Tuesday.

She trudged to her polling booth at Dadar’s Balmohan Vidyamandir, but had to scale nine tall steps before she could get to the voting hall. The booth did not have ramps or helpers. “I managed to get here, but it was painful.

I had to take breaks and sit before I could vote,” she rued.

Injured watchman goes to Satara to vote

Aapji Jadhav (40), a watchman injured during the terror attack at Cama Hospital on November 26, 2008, has not given up on the system. On Tuesday, he went to his hometown Satara just so that he could vote.

“We all want stable governance. But if you don’t vote, how will you be part of the change?” said Jadhav, who spent five months in hospital after 26/11. He felt the attacks had turned the spotlight firmly on Mumbai, while Maharashtra’s interiors were being ignored.

Voters better ’04, touch 72 pc mark

Arunachal PradeshThere was heavy polling for the Arunachal Pradesh assembly elections on Tuesday, with 72 per cent of the 733,000 electors turning out to vote.

Elections were held in 57 of the 60 assembly seats, as the Congress has no opponent in three.

In the 2004 assembly elections, the voter turnout was 70 per cent.

“At least 72 per cent of votes were cast,” Chief Electoral Officer Yeshi Tsering said on the phone from Itanagar. “We can arrive at the exact figure only after reports from remote centres come in.”

First-time voters feel empowered

voters The smudged ink stain on her index finger makes Uchita Shah (21) feel “really empowered”.

“I am loving it more than any nail art,” said the first-time voter from Kandivli (West) as she flaunted the proof that she had voted on Tuesday. “I feel so grown up.”

Tuesday was an exciting day for youngsters who cast their vote for the first time.

While for Shah it came easily, Sheikh Tufail Rashid Ahmed (19) had to do a bit of running around before he got inked as his name was misspelt as ‘Nufel’ on the Kapadia Nagar voter list in Kalina.

Citizen volunteers play guide to voters

voters They got together for a cause.

About 100 volunteers from residents’ groups, including Khar Residents’ Association, H-West Citizens’ Trust and Action for Good Governance in India who came together to guide voters.

From door-to-door appeals, to helping voters get information to assisting senior citizens and handicapped people get to booths in cars.

Their central booth at Khar Library saw six volunteers with mobiles, doubling as helplines.

We could have done better in your state, admits PM

Manmohan SinghAfter insults from Chavan, who called him a frog croaking in the monsoon, and Uddhav, who referred to him as a mouse caught in a trap, Raj Thackeray has now got a pitying ‘I feel sorry for him’ from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

“[His anti-‘outsider’ campaign] is not right,” Singh said, addressing a pre-election meet in south Mumbai on Sunday. “I feel sorry for him… the way he is talking. Maharashtra voters will give him the right answer.”

On the last day of campaigning, Singh also offered some candid admissions of the Congress-led government’s shortcomings in the state.

A sweet deal in Kolhapur

Sharad Pawar“Earlier, the purchase price for sugarcane used to be decided in Baramati (NCP Chief Sharad Pawar’s hometown). Now, it is decided here in Kolhapur,” Raju Shetti says, as he gestures to a crowd waiting for him at Chande village, about 430 km south of Mumbai.

Living on the edge

mumbaDiago Fernandes’s wife will not vote on October 13.

“This time around, I won’t even try to persuade her,” says her husband, a resident of Naigaon, a growing suburb that is officially in Thane district but is along Mumbai’s bustling suburban train route.

Fernandes has been living here for 12 years, having moved here from a tiny one-room flat in Mahim at the start of a realty boom. That boom has quadrupled the population in the Mira- Bhayandar and Vasai-Virar stretches.

You will get a say in how funds are spent, vow candidates

congressAccountability seems to be a new buzzword this election.

Sensing the push for greater transparency, especially after the introduction of the sunshine Right to Information Act four years ago, candidates this time are promising everything from ‘urban panchayats’ to open houses for voters to air their grievances and regular disclosure of how MLAs’ funds are spent.

In Vile Parle, Congress candidate Krishna Hegde (42) has promised to update his electorate on his achievements through his personal website.

“Not just my voters, anyone around the world will be able to view my work and comment on it,” said the first-time candidate.

Gadchiroli tense over naxal threat

Naxalites The feat of bullet has cast a dark shadow on the power of ballot. The election campaigning in all the three Assembly constituencies in the tribal district of Gadchiroli - Armori, Gadchiroli and Aheri- has been badly affected following violence threat posed by Naxalites (CPI-Maoists). The CPI-Maoists have given a call to boycott the assembly elections.

The Maoists, who are now very aggressive in the wake of the recent arrest of their ideologue and politburo member Kobad Ghandy, killed at least three villagers last week in the district, branding them police informers and terrorized the people of the district if they defy their call on October 13.

Basel bans anti-Muslim election poster

Geneva - The Swiss canton of Basel-Stadt has banned a political campaign poster it deemed to be racially prejudiced against Muslims, local media reported Tuesday.

The poster, part of a campaign by the right-wing Swiss People's Party (SVP) to forbid minarets across the country, shows a veiled woman, standing next to a Swiss flag which is pierced by menacing- looking towers.

"Stop! Yes for the ban on minarets," is written next to the image, in French- and German- language posters.

The Swiss will vote on a referendum to ban the construction of minarets, put forward by the SVP, on November 29.

Basel decided the posters violated a local law banning posting items which contain racist or discriminatory content.

Let the fun and games begin

Assembly electionIt’s not just the faces that are getting younger, the manifestos are too.

With just days to go before the October 13 Assembly election, candidates are offering everything from watersports clubs to acting classes and more open spaces for cricket, in an attempt to woo young voters.

This time around, nearly a fifth of the state’s 7.56 crore voters are under the age of 25.

While the fun-and-games promises are clearly targeting the urban youth, there are also a number of promises aimed at their rural counterparts — like educational reform and more self- employment schemes.

Filing of nominations for Maharashtra, Haryana Arunachal elections ends today

indiaNew Delhi, Sept 25 : Filing of nominations for Maharashtra, Haryana and Arunachal Pradesh Assembly elections will close this evening.

The last day for withdrawing of nomination is September 29 and the scrutiny will be held on September 26.

In Haryana, Janhit Congress has released its final list of 33 candidates. The Congress has also released second list of 17 candidates. And the BJP announced 13 more names of candidates.

126 candidates have filed nominations till yesterday in Arunachal Pradesh.

British opposition calls for immediate general election

British opposition calls for immediate general electionLondon - Britain's Conservatives Monday called for an immediate general election to end the "paralysis" of the government of Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Conservative leader David Cameron said a nationwide poll should be held "as soon as possible after the European elections" on June 4.

He urged Conservative Party members campaigning for the European Parliament elections to collect signatures in support of a general election.

Election Commission to meet President with list of new MPs

Election Commission to meet President with list of new MPsNew Delhi, May 18: The Election Commission will formally submit the list of newly-elected Lok Sabha members to President Pratibha Patil on Monday.

The new House is constituted by the Election Commission, which performs this work within two to three days of declaration of results.

The three-member Election Commission comprising the Chief Election Commissioner Navin Chawla along with two other commissioners S. Y. Quraishi and V. S. Sampat will call on the President at 6.00 in the evening, a Rashtrapati Bhavan official stated.

Indonesia's Yudhoyono announces bank chief as running mate

Indonesia's Yudhoyono announces bank chief as running mateBandung, Indonesia - Incumbent Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on Friday declared the central bank's governor as his running mate for his re-election bid in July.

Yudhoyono's nomination of Bank Indonesia Governor Boediono as his vice-presidential running mate is likely to be welcomed by the financial markets as the central banker has a reputation for being a capable and market-friendly economist.

Communist Party to decide future course of action after election results

Communist Party to decide future course of action after election resultsNew Delhi, May 15: The Communist Party of India (Marxist) will decide its future course of action regarding formation of a government after election results are out on May 16.

Leaders of CPI (M) and its other allies are to meet after the election results are out.

"As far as CPM is concerned, our position, Left Front''s position and whatever parties who have adjustment with us, their position is absolutely clear. We will decide our future course of action," said Brinda Karat, a senior leader, CPI (M).

Third Front has ‘withered’ away even before counting: BJP

Third Front has ‘withered’ away even before counting: BJPNew Delhi, May 14: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday claimed that the Third Front has withered away even before the counting of votes in the Lok Sabha elections.

"We pity the Third Front as it is becoming extinct even before counting has begun. Left has allowed the withering away of the Third Front," BJP Spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad told reporters here.

Prasad also accused the Left parties of enabling the Third Front.

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