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Coimbatore registers 68.1% voter turnout Coimbatore registers 68.1% voter turnout

Apr-25-2014 | 0 Comments

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COIMBATORE: Voters from the most urbanised region of Western Tamil Nadu in Coimbatore parliamentary constituency failed to show up in large numbers, with turnout at just 68.1 percent. High drama prevailed outside the city with poll boycotts, bogus voting attempts and seizures of more than hundred saris that were allegedly stacked up to be distributed to voters in the district.

Polling was also briefly held up at various booths due to minor technical glitches but election officials claimed that overall, things were under control without any major incidents reported in Coimbatore, Erode and Tirupur districts. The election commission had also set up model polling booths in Pollachi and Erode where special facilities for handicapped and senior citizens along with a team of volunteers to assist them were deployed.

"We had initiated all measures to ensure that the elections are held in fair and free manner without any external interference," said an election official in Coimbatore district.

As per the official data Coimbatore parliamentary constituency recorded 68.1 percent polling percentage as opposed to 70.8 percent recorded in the 2009 general elections. Pollachi constituency recorded 73 percent polling, lower than the 75.8 percent recorded in 2009. Tirupur recorded 76.27 percent against 74.64 percentage registered in the previous elections whereas polling percentage was at 75.3 percentage, a bit lower than 75.98 percent recorded in 2009 from Erode parliamentary constituency.

Polling remained more or less incident free in the region apart from the arrest of a 21 year old woman from Unjavelampatti in Pollachi constituency when polling officials caught her red handed while trying to cast a bogus vote. The accused identified as Vishnu Priya (21) attempted to impersonate another woman from the locality but was arrested and later released on bail. Meanwhile, Sirumugai police near Mettupalayam in Coimbatore district have also made a seizure of saris that were allegedly stocked to be distributed among voters. Poll proceedings were also boycotted at Kaliyapuram in Pollachi constituency by more than 100 families in the settlement alleging that they were not getting basic amenities including proper water supply from Thirumalaiyampalayam town Panchayat. Maximum polling percentage in Pollachi was recorded at Pollachi and Madathukulam assembly constituencies with 77 percentage whereas Kinathukkadavu had the lowest at 66 percent. Gobi chettipalayam recorded maximum polling from Tirupur Lok Sabha constituency with a voting percentage of 80.25.

"We have been protesting for the last three days and the officials have been assuring us that they will take measures to improve the situation in the coming days but we clearly told them that we will be voting in the next elections only," said R Thulasimani, a 45-year-old woman from Kaliyapuram.

The election commission, as part of its initiatives to promote voting had set up model polling booths at Edayangattu Valasu in Erode and Pollachi where college students were deployed as volunteers to assist senior citizens and differently-abled voters. Medical teams and seating facilities were also arranged at the booth. Voting commenced at 7am after a mock poll but minor glitches were reported from EVM machines that delayed the poll process at these centres including at Race Course in Coimbatore city, Thudiyalur, Karamadai and Thirumalaiyampalayam polling booths. Coimbatore Superintendent of Police P Sudhakar claimed that polling was completed without any major interference and untoward incidents in Coimbatore district.

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