Migrants were busy with weddings, rich didn’t come out as it was hot: Ludhiana MLA Balwinder Bains

Divya Goyal
MLA Simarjeet and Balwinder Bains in Ludhiana. (Express photo by Gurmeet Singh)

Voter turnout in Ludhiana parliamentary constituency in the Lok Sabha polls witnessed a decline at 62.15 per cent compared to the last two general elections. While the turnout was 70.64 per cent in 2014 polls, it was 64 per cent in 2009. Of the 16 lakh voters in the constituency, 10,44,747 lakh votes were polled . A total of 5,80,801 males (64.44 per cent), 4,63,934 females (59.51 per cent) and 12 third gender (16.90 per cent) voters cast their votes.

Among the nine assembly segments, Atam Nagar, Ludhiana South and Gill witnessed the maximum decline in voter turnout. In Atam Nagar, the turnout declined from 68 per cent in 2014 to 58 per cent this year. Similarly, in Ludhiana South, 55 per cent votes were polled compared to 65 per cent turnout in 2014.

Ludhiana South and Atam Nagar are considered to be strongholds of Lok Insaaf Party s (LIP) Balwinder Singh Bains and Simarjeet Singh Bains. Balwinder Singh Bains is MLA from Ludhiana South while his brother Simarjeet Singh Bains, who is contesting from Ludhiana seat, is MLA from Atam Nagar.

Balwinder Singh Bains told The Indian Express that less turnout in their segments is not going to harm them in anyway. Our lead in both the segments is going to be constant or in fact it may increase. In my segment Ludhiana South there are many migrant families from UP and Bihar and this is the season of their marriages. They have gone to their villages and hence couldn t vote. Voting dropped in Ludhiana South because my migrant brothers were missing in action, he said.

About the low turnout in his brother s segment, Atam Nagar, Balwinder said, Atam Nagar is dominated by rich families and it was too hot for them to come out and vote. We will still win both segments, Balwinder said.

Simarjeet had unsuccessfully contested from Ludhiana in 2014. But he had won Atam Nagar, Ludhiana South assembly segments.

In Gill segment, which was dominated by AAP in 2014, the turn out declined from 74 per cent in 2014 to 64 per cent now.

In rural segments of Dakha and Jagraon, from where too AAP had a clean sweep in 2014, turnout was 67.54 per cent and 63 per cent respectively. It declined considerably from 76.40 per cent and 71 per cent in 2014, respectively.

In urban constituencies of Ludhiana Central, West, East and North – the turnout was recorded at 62.11 per cent, 62.43 per cent, 63.67 per cent and 67.78 per cent respectively. In 2014, Congress secured the most number of votes from North, Central and East segments and AAP from west. This year, Ludhiana South witnessed the lowest and Dakha the highest turnout in Ludhiana.