Mumbai on Monday once again disappointed with a poor turnout in the Assembly elections. While Mumbai Suburban recorded 48.90% voting, just 46.13% of the electorate cast their ballot in the city. In the city of Gurugram in Haryana, the voter turnout was an abysmal 52.33% till 6 pm.
There were stray incidents of violence in both Maharashtra, where 288 seats were at stake, and Haryana, where elections were held in 90 constituencies. Maharashtra recorded a turnout of 58.39%, according to the Election Commission while Haryana saw 64.11% of the electorate voting.
A candidate of pro-farmer outfit Swabhimani Paksha was allegedly shot at and assaulted by three men in Maharashtra’s Amravati district. Reports of scuffles between Shiv Sena and Nationalist Congress Party workers were reported from the state’s Beed district, The Indian Express reported. Clashes were also reported from Jalna. The Congress claimed it filed more than 250 complaints about poll violations with the Election Commission.
Bharatiya Janata Party and Congress supporters pelted stones at each other outside a booth in Haryana’s Nuh district in the morning. There was a similar incident in Kaithal district, where the police had to charge a mob with batons.
Republican Party of India (Athawale) leader Sunil Khambe was held for throwing ink on an electronic voting machine in Thane near Maharashtra.
There were also a report of malfunctioning electronic voting machines. Polling booths in Kalyan West near Mumbai suffered electricity problems and glitches a number of times, forcing authorities to replace voting machines.
Bollywood celebrities and cricketers turned out by the dozens in Mumbai to cast their votes. Actors such as Amitabh Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Amitabh Bachchan, Madhuri Dixit, Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Deepika Padukone, and cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar were some of the public figures who cast votes and appealed to people to exercise their franchise.
Exit polls released in the evening predicted a sweep for the BJP-Shiv Sena combine in Maharashtra, and a massive win for the saffron party in Haryana. According to the India Today-Axis poll, the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance will win 166 to 194 seats in Maharashtra. The Congress-Nationalist Congress Party is expected to win 72 to 90 seats, and others 22 to 34 seats.
The Times Now poll predicted 230 seats for the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance, and just 48 for the Congress-NCP combine. TV9 Marathi-Cicero said that ruling alliance would win 197 seats, and gave the Congress and the NCP 75 seats.
In Haryana, the Jan Ki Baat exit poll said the BJP would win 52 to 63 of the 90 seats while the Congress would come a poor second with 15 to 19 seats. The Times Now poll said the BJP would win 71 seats, the Congress 11 and the Indian National Lok Dal zero. The News X poll said the BJP would win 75 to 80 seats, and the Congress just nine to 12.
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