The turnout for the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) election was around 37 per cent till the time of filing this report. The turnout in the 2016 polls was 45 per cent.
What does this indicate? Are the educated youth and others disinclined to come out to vote? To add to the woes, the three-day holiday – Sunday followed by Guru Nanak Jayanti on Monday and Tuesday because of the elections – enabled thousands of families to get back to their native villages to spend time with their families.
People’s lack of enthusiasm, in spite of the “no-holds” barred campaign by all contesting parties, explains the growing antipathy among people against the political parties. The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS), which claimed that it has fulfilled what it had promised to people during last six years, made little impact. Similarly, the BJP, which went all out in the GHMC polls promising the moon, too appears to face apathy from the electorate. The AIMIM too needs to do some introspection on the poll percentages. Interestingly, the Congress and both the Left parties – the CPI and the CPM, which have no major stakes, could have the last laugh.
Although the TRS and AIMIM look more than confident of winning more than half the seats together, the stakes for the BJP are high. Home minister Amit Shah has even gone to the extent of saying that the next mayor will be from his party. However, he declined to give the number of wards that his party is going to win.
There are 150 wards and 1,122 contestants with 74.44 lakh eligible voters.
The state election commission has put a ban on any “exit polls” as the re-elections are scheduled to be conducted on complaints of some technical glitches, which include wrong publication of the CPM symbol to CPI in ballot papers.