Himachal Pradesh records 75.6% voting
Himachal : As per the reports received at State HQ, the approximate poll percentage in the state stands at 75.6 percent, stated Chief Electoral Officer, Maneesh Garg here today. He said that the poll percentage through EVMs was 74.6%. Besides this, 1% postal ballots had been received already taking the overall turnout to 75.6% till now and nearly 2% postal ballots are yet to be received. The highest polling percentage of 85.25 % was reported from Doon AC and the lowest polling percentage of 62.53 % was in Shimla AC at the end of the Poll.
The State election department in 2022 Vidhan Sabha Elections (VSE) had laid a lot of focus on the constituencies with low voter turnout in VSE 2017. The state election department launched its SVEEP and voter awareness activities under its unique programme UTSAV (Universal Transparent Elections through Systematic Awareness of Voters) and specially focused on these 11 assembly Constituencies of the State.
A comparative analysis of these constituencies viz: Dharampur, Jaisinghpur, Shimla, Baijnath, Bhoranj, Solan, Kasumpati, Sarkaghat, Jaswan Pragpur, Hamirpur and Badsar revealed that out of 11 ACs as above, the voter turnout eventually improved in 9 of them, by upto 7%.
The percentage point increase in Dharampur AC was 6.93 i.e from 63.6% in 2017 to 70.54 percent in assembly elections 2022, Similarly in Jaisinghpur the percentage increased from 63.79 in 2017 to 65.31, in Bhoranj from 65.04 percent in 2017 to 68.55 percent in present assembly elections. In Solan from 66.45 percent to 66.84, in Barsar, from 69.06 to 71.17 percent, in Hamirpur from 68.52 to 71.28, in Jaswan-Pragpur from 68.41 to 73.67 percent, in Sarkaghat the percentage increase was from 67.23 to 68.06 and in Kasumpati from 66.86 to 68.24 percent. However, in Shimla(U) and Baijnath the percentage dipped slightly from 63.93 percent in 2017 VSE to 62.53 and from 64.92 in VSE 2017 to 63.46 in VSE 2022 respectively. These increases are other than the expected increase in postal ballots. The CEO stated that the Hon’ble Election Commission of India on their visit to the State had also asked and guided the state to focus on low voter turnout ACs and thanked them for the same.
The total males in the electorate were 2788925, the female voters were 2736306 and the third gender voters were 38. Out of these, the total percentage of male population who exercised their right to franchise was 72.4 and that of females was 76.8 percent besides the third gender poll percentage was 68.4 percent.
He said that the strong rooms have been sealed with 3-tier security system and the scrutiny has been completed, in the presence of Observers of ECI, candidates or their representatives and ROs.
CEO said due to effective enforcement by all enforcement agencies, specialy Income tax, State Excise and Police departments, as well as expenditure monitoring teams, seizures of nearly Rs. 60 crore were made since announcement of the poll on 14th October till day of poll, as compared to about Rs. 10 crore in 2017 Vidhan Sabha elections.
As many as 240 Flying squads were deputed in all 68 assembly segments, besides 242 Static Surveillance teams, 75 Assistant Expenditure Observers, 166 Video surveillance teams, 72 video viewing teams, 73 accounting teams, 53 Complaint monitoring control rooms and Call centers at Returning Officer (RO) and District Election Officer (DEO) and CEO level, 13 Media Certification and Monitoring Committee (MCMC) and paid news at CEO and DEO level and 13 expenditure monitoring cells at CEO, DEO level round the clock. A total of nearly 3600 personnel were deployed in the above expenditure monitoring teams.
CEO revealed that out of total 1779 complaints received during this period, 292 were closed after inquiry, and corrective action was taken and compliance reported in as many as 1308 such complaints. Out of these, 1013 complaints were received over C-vigil out of which corrective action was taken in respect of 861 complaints. He attributed this increase to the awareness generated by the election machinery about this unique App of ECI and thanked the vigilant citizens of the state for reporting violations on the application, helping in better enforcement of MCC during these elections.