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  4. UP MLC polls 2022: Over 98 per cent voter turnout recorded in the elections

UP MLC polls 2022: Over 98 per cent voter turnout recorded in the elections

According to the Election Commission of India, the average polling percentage recorded till 4 pm was 98.11 with Rae Bareli registering the highest voter turnout at 99.35 per cent and Gorakhpur the

PTI Reported by: PTI Lucknow Published on: April 09, 2022 23:43 IST
Legislative council elections, UP MLC polls, Voter turnout, Election Commission of India, Chief Mini
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UP MLC polls 2022: Over 98 per cent voter turnout recorded in the elections 

Highlights

  • An average voter turnout of over 98 per cent was recorded in the UP Legislative Council elections
  • Voting for 27 seats under local authorities' constituencies began at 8 am and ended at 4 pm
  • CM Yogi Adityanath was among those who turned up early to exercise their franchise

An average voter turnout of over 98 per cent was recorded in the biennial Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council elections on Saturday, officials said.

Voting for 27 seats under local authorities' constituencies began at 8 am and ended at 4 pm. According to the Election Commission of India, the average polling percentage recorded till 4 pm was 98.11 with Rae Bareli registering the highest voter turnout at 99.35 per cent and Gorakhpur the lowest at 96.50 per cent.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who was among those who turned up early to exercise their franchise, told reporters in Gorakhpur, "In the recent assembly elections, the BJP (like in 2017) won more than two-thirds of the seats and formed a strong government. After four decades, a situation has come when a ruling party (BJP) will be able to bag a huge mandate in the Legislative Council too".

"In 2017, the (BJP) government faced challenges as the SP used to play a negative role and obstruct development and welfare programmes. But I hope that in this election we will get a huge mandate in the Legislative Council and development and welfare programmes will move forward," he said.

In a tweet in Hindi, Adityanath, who voted in the Gorakhpur-Maharajganj constituency, said, "For the creation of a new Uttar Pradesh and for the victory of good governance, (I) discharged my duty by casting vote in the biennial elections for the legislative council from local authorities' constituencies."

In another tweet prior to this, he urged people to vote for the victory of development, nationalism and good governance, and said, "Your one vote will strengthen the journey towards a self-reliant Uttar Pradesh".

Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav could not cast his vote in Mainpuri as two MLCs from the Mathura-Etah-Mainpuri local authorities' constituency were elected unopposed. SP patron Mulayam Singh Yadav, national general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav and Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohia) president Shivpal Singh Yadav cast their votes at the Saifai polling centre in Etawah. Devendra Singh Yadav, SP's Mainpuri district president, told PTI, "Akhilesh Yadav did not cast his vote as MLCs were elected unopposed from this seat."

Akhilesh Yadav is the MLA from Karhal Assembly constituency in Mainpuri district and a voter from the Mathura-Etah-Mainpuri local authorities' constituency. Union Minister Smriti Irani voted in Amethi, from where she is the Lok Sabha MP. There were 95 candidates in the fray and polling was held at 739 centres, according to the Uttar Pradesh chief electoral officer.

As many as 1,20,657 voters were eligible to exercise their franchise in these polls. The local authorities' constituencies for which voting was held are Moradabad-Bijnor, Rampur-Bareilly, Pilibhit-Shahjahanpur, Sitapur, Lucknow-Unnao, Rae Bareli, Pratapgarh, Sultanpur, Barabanki, Bahraich, Gonda, Faizabad, Basti-Siddharthnagar, Gorakhpur-Maharajganj, Deoria, Azamgarh-Mau, Ballia, Ghazipur, Jaunpur, Varanasi, Allahabad, Jhansi-Jalaun-Lalitpur, Kanpur-Fatehpur, Etawah-Farrukhabad, Agra-Firozabad, Meerut-Ghaziabad and Muzaffarnagar-Saharanpur.

These seats are spread over 58 districts in the state. The counting of votes will take place on April 12. Nine MLCs from eight local authorities' constituencies -- Budaun, Hardoi, Kheri, Mirzapur-Sonbhadra, Banda-Hamirpur, Aligarh, Bulandshahr and Mathura-Etah-Mainpuri -- have been elected unopposed.

Two MLCs were elected unopposed from the Mathura-Etah-Mainpuri local authorities' constituency, while one MLC each was elected unopposed from the remaining constituencies. Following a resounding victory in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, the BJP is looking to emerge as the single-largest party in the state Legislative Council as well by winning a majority of the 36 Upper House seats.

In the 100-member Legislative Council, the BJP currently has 34 MLCs, the SP 17 and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) four. The Congress, the Apna Dal (Sonelal) and the NISHAD Party have one member each in the House. The Teachers' group has two MLCs, while the Independent group (Nirdal Samooh) and Independents have one MLC each. Currently, 38 seats are vacant.

The voters in this biennial election are village pradhans, members and chairmen of block development councils and zila panchayats, and corporators in urban areas. MLAs and MPs also vote. The Congress and the BSP did not field any candidate in the Legislative Council elections, making it a direct fight between the BJP and the SP, the principal opposition in the state assembly.

Of the 36 BJP candidates, five are former SP leaders, who joined the saffron party ahead of the Assembly polls. The SP had declared its candidates for 34 seats, leaving the Meerut-Ghaziabad and Bulandshahr seats for its ally Rashtriya Lok Dal Prominent among those who were fielded were Dr Kafeel Khan, a paediatrician whose services were terminated after several children died allegedly due to an oxygen crisis at a Gorakhpur hospital, from Deoria; Mashkoor Ahmad from Rampur-Bareilly; and sitting MLCs Sunil Kumar Sajan, Rajesh Kumar and Udayveer Singh from Lucknow-Unnao, Barabanki, and Mathura-Etah-Mainpuri seats respectively. 

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