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Uttarakhand Election 2017: 68% Overall Voter Turnout In 69 Assembly Constituencies As Voting Ends

15 February, 2017 1:49 PM
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Uttarakhand Election 2017: 68% Overall Voter Turnout In 69 Assembly Constituencies As Voting Ends

Dehradun: Voting has ended in Uttarakhand's 69 constituencies spread across 13 districts (7 in Garhwal region and the remaining 6 in Kumaon region of the state). Residents of Uttarakhand voted today to decide who will form the next government in the state. The overall voter turnout was 68%, which is 1.2% higher than the 2012 Assembly election (66.8%). The BJP is hoping to unseat the ruling Congress government of Chief Minister Harish Rawat, which is battling corruption charges. Out of a total of 70 constituencies, 69 have voted today and 1 constituency - Karnaprayag will vote on March 9 because of the untimely death of BSP candidate Kuldeep Singh Kanwasi, who met with a fatal accident recently. Karnaprayag is a high profile constituency from where Deputy Speaker of the state assembly Anusuya Prasad Maikhuri is contesting. The security level across the hill state had been heightened, especially along the border with Nepal. Anti-incumbency has always been a factor in Uttarakhand, which has voted out the government in power at the time, in successive elections since its formation. Chief Minister Harish Rawat contested from Haridwar Rural in Garhwal against sitting BJP legislator Swami Yatishwaranand, banking on the Muslim and Dalit voters in the city that is one of the largest pilgrim centres of the country. The BJP has accused the Congress of turning "Dev Bhoomi" Uttarakhand, meaning the land of Gods to "Loot Bhoomi" - the land of corruption. For Chief Minister Rawat, the battle was seen as uphill and he also contested from Kichcha in Kumaon. The Congress had portrayed this as his attempt to reaffirm the party's commitment to both Kumaon and Garhwal. His detractors saw this as a last-ditch attempt to save the party in seats where up to 12 leaders have defected, leading to instability and a loss of face for the Congress. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had urged people of Uttarakhand to come out and vote in large numbers. A high voter turnout would indicate a change in government. In 2012, Uttarakhand saw a voter turnout of 67.22 per cent. Uttarakhand voted in a single phase. Counting of votes will take place on March 11.

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February 15, 2017 - 18:00 pm: Uttarakhand Election Ends - 68% voter turnout recorded overall in Uttarakhand till 5 pm - which is the final provisional tally as voting comes to an end. Figures are according to the Election Commission of India. In 2012, Uttarakhand saw a final voter turnout of 66.8% - making this year's turnout 1.2% higher. Counting of votes will take place on March 11.

February 15, 2017 - 17:00 pm: Uttarakhand Election Live - Voting ends across all Assembly constituencies in Uttarakhand at 5 pm - as per schedule. However, those who joined the line of voters till 4:59 pm will be allowed to cast their vote.

February 15, 2017 - 15:30 pm: Uttarakhand Election Live - 53% voter turnout recorded in Uttarakhand till 3 pm, according to the Election Commission of India.

NDTV: You've been undertaking the Uttarakhand Swabhimaan Yatra for the past many months. How satisfied are you with the campaign?

Harish Rawat: Quite satisfied. Since March 2016 BJP and the central government have been striking the swabhinaan of the people of this state, that is why my campaign is a direct fight against that attempt.

NDTV: Migration, employment, women' safety... are these the main issues your party will work on?

Harish Rawat: Yes, I am the first Chief Minister who has made a time bound agenda to reverse migration in the state. I have an agenda and I have been working on that. My focus has been on the construction of roads.

NDTV: Is the Prime Minister coming to your constituency seen as an open challenge to you?

Harish Rawat: I am a small man and I am the Chief Minister of a small state... some of the things he (PM Narendra Modi) has said have been ill-advised and do not give him or his office the respect it deserves.

February 15, 2017 - 12:30 pm: Uttarakhand Election Live - 24% voter turnout recorded in Uttarakhand till 11 am, according to the Election Commission of India.

February 15, 2017 - 12:10 pm: Uttarakhand Election Live - Chief Minister Harish Rawat casts his vote at a booth in Uttarakhand's Dharampur Assembly constituency, near state capital Dehradun.

February 15, 2017 - 11:40 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - Chief Minister Harish Rawat arrives at the polling station to cast his vote. Mr Rawat is contesting from Haridwar Rural in Garhwal against sitting BJP legislator Swami Yatishwaranand, banking on the Muslim and Dalit voters in the city that's one of the largest pilgrim centres of the country. The battle for Mr Rawat is seen as uphill and he is also contesting from Kichcha in Kumaon. The Congress is portraying this as his attempt to reaffirm the party's commitment to both Kumaon and Garhwal. His detractors see this as a last-ditch attempt to save the party in seats where up to 12 leaders have defected, leading to instability and a loss of face for the Congress. The ruling Congress government of Chief Minister Harish Rawat is battling corruption charges.

February 15, 2017 - 11:00 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - 24% voter turnout recorded in Uttarakhand till 11 am, according to the Election Commission of India.

February 15, 2017 - 10:35 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev casts his vote at a polling booth in Haridwar.

February 15, 2017 - 10:25 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - Congress' Indira Hridayesh casts her vote in Haldwani. She is contesting against BSP's S Ahmad and BJP's JPS Rautela.

February 15, 2017 - 09:55 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - Radha Raturi, Uttarakhand's Chief Electoral Officer casts her vote at the Government Girls Inter College in Dehradun's Kishanpur.

February 15, 2017 - 09:45 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - 6% voter turnout recorded in Uttarakhand till 9 am, according to the Election Commission of India.

February 15, 2017 - 09:40 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - People cast their vote at a booth in Shrinagar. BSP's Ganesh Prasad, BJP's Dr DS Rawat and Congress' Ganesh Godiyal are contesting from this constituency.

February 15, 2017 - 09:30 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - BJP's Uttarakhand president Ajay Bhatt casts his vote at a polling booth in Ranikhet.

February 15, 2017 - 08:30 am: Uttarakhand Election Live - Voting for 69 of the total 70 assembly seats in Uttarakhand began at 08:00 am today. The constituency of Karnaprayag will vote on March 9 due to the untimely death of BSP candidate Kuldeep Singh Kanwasi.

Source: ndtv.com

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