UP Local Elections 2017: Some EVMs in Kanpur Only Registered Vote For BJP, Claim Voters
Lucknow, Nov 23: A total of 52.85 per cent of voter turnout was recorded in the first phase of Uttar Pradesh Local Elections 2017 held on Wednesday amid reports of EVM malfunctioning, bogus voting and EVM tampering. In Kanpur’s Chakeri, at booth number 58 of Tiwaripur ward, voters complained about one such situation. No matter what button in the EVM they pressed, the votes were being registered for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) only, they said. (ALSO READ – UP Civic Polls: Yogi Adityanath Casts Vote in Gorakhpur, Says BJP Will Win)
Initially, it was reported that the voting was not stopped even after the people complained to the electoral officer. However, amid the protests by the Opposition parties, the returning officer of the booth was immediately removed and the EVM was replaced, authorities claimed as per a News18 report.
In a similar incident, voters in Naubasta area of Kanpur alleged that the EVM in booth number 66 was rigged as pressing the button for any other party, except the BJP, meant registering a vote for the saffron party. As soon as this news spread, the voting process was, in the region, was marred by huge protests and the police had to resort to lathi-charge to disperse the crowd.
Meanwhile, in Gorakhpur, five women were held casting bogus votes. During investigation, they revealed that they were paid to cast bogus votes by a person named Anup.
In Meerut, at ward number 70, names of many voters were reported to be missing from the voters’ list while names of those who were no longer alive were present.
Briefing reporters, State Election Commissioner SK Agarwal said, “Polling was absolutely peaceful. Webcasting, usage of CCTV cameras and intense monitoring was done to ensure peaceful poll. Re-polling has been ordered in a polling booth in Badaun, while a case has been registered against an independent candidate for violation of model code of conduct in Shamli. Two EVMs were replaced each in Meerut and Kanpur.”
Polling in the first of the three phases was held in 24 districts of the state in which mayoral elections were also held for five municipal corporations: Agra, Kanpur, Ayodhya, Gorakhpur and Meerut.
A total of 54.08 per cent polling was recorded in Faizabad district, which includes the newly constituted Ayodhya Municipal Corporation. Gorakhpur recorded a polling of 39.23 percent.
The highest polling during the first phase was recorded in Hamirpur, which witnessed 69.59 per cent turn out. It was followed by Amethi at 68.44 per cent polling. Kanpur (Nagar) recorded 44.92 per cent polling while, Agra recorded 43.11 per cent.
The districts which went to polls in the first of the three phase urban local bodies’ polls are: Shamli(66.83 per cent), Meerut(54.09 per cent), Hapur(57.72 per cent), Bijnor (63.35 per cent), Badaun(60.89 per cent), Hathras(63.72 per cent), Kasganj(62.26 per cent), Agra(43.11 per cent), Kanpur Nagar (44.92 per cent), Jalaun(61.85 per cent), Hamirpur(69.59 per cent), Chitrakoot (62.19 per cent), Kaushambi(65 per cent), Pratapgarh(61.51 per cent), Unnao(62.11 per cent), Hardoi (64.14 per cent), Amethi(68.44 per cent), Faizabad (54.08 per cent), Gonda(60.39 per cent), Basti(55.57 per cent), Gorakhpur(39.23 per cent), Azamgarh(59.44 per cent), Ghazipur (57.97 per cent) and Sonbhadra(57.71 per cent).
The voters’ turnout in the mayoral election in Gorakhpur was 35.62 per cent, while 49.98 per cent voters turned up in Faizabad to elect the first mayor of the Ayodhya Municipal Corporation.
Polling for the other two phases will be held on November 26 and November 29, while counting of votes for all the three phases would be done on December 1.
(Inputs from PTI)