Maha Election 2019: Low turnout in Bandra W; seniors exercise their right, youths abstain

Mumbai: The Bandra (W) constituency, where a large number of Bollywood A-listers cast their votes in the assembly election, had urged the citizens to follow suit, only to fall on deaf ears. The voter turnout in this constituency was low at hardly 38.13 per cent, as compared to other constituencies.

The same scenario was witnessed during the Lok Sabha election. Interestingly, this assembly constituency has a large number of literate population and still the voter turnout continues to be low.

The constituency, witnessed a face-off between BJP MLA and state minister of school education Ashish Shelar and three-time Congress corporator Asif Zakaria.

The Bandra (W) constituency was once a stronghold of Indian National Congress (INC), owing to the presence of minority population, was taken over by Shelar of BJP in 2014.

This year, there was an alarmingly low voter turnout, with mostly senior citizens, and youngsters were hardly seen thronging the polling booths.

Hansika Shah, 63, a retired banker who had come to cast her vote, said, “I deem it necessary to exercise my right to vote. If one fails to do so, they are not even eligible to complain if the issues are not addressed. Surprisingly, I have rarely seen youngsters taking the efforts to come and vote.”

A polling officer of this constituency said, till 2pm, only 23 per cent of the voters had turned up at the polling booths, while the final turnout till 6pm came off to a mere 38.13 per cent.

Meanwhile, the other assembly constituencies in Mumbai North Central had a fair voter turnout of 52 per cent in Chandivali, 52.69 per cent in Vile Parle, 51.34 per cent in Bandra (E), 44.17 per cent in Kurla and 40.94 per cent in Kalina.

In 2014, this seat registered a turnout of 51.23 per cent, while it was 43.05 per cent in 2009. In the 2014 Maharashtra Assembly elections, Shelar had won this seat by defeating the INC candidate by a margin of 26911 votes which was 18.33 per cent of the total votes polled in the constituency. BJP had a vote share of 50.93 per cent in 2014 in the sea

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