Nashik: Voters from five districts in North Maharashtra exercised their franchise on Monday and sealed the fates of 428 candidates standing from the 47 state assembly constituencies in these districts in the electronic voting machines (EVMs).
Ahmednagar district recorded the highest voter turnout (62.86%) by 5pm. Though maximum voters polled in their votes in Ahmednagar this year, the voter turnout has dipped significantly as compared to the 2014 state assembly elections, when it had recorded 70.87%.
Nandurbar district recorded voter turnout of 57%, followed by Dhule (56.7%), Nashik (56%) and Jalgaon (54.59%).
One voter died in Bhusaval state assembly constituency while exercising his franchise.
In Dhule city, police lodged a case against a person identified as Harshal for violating the model code of conduct. He had allegedly uploaded a photo in which he was seen casting his vote.
14 EVMs and 64 VVPATs reportedly developed glitches in Jalgaon district. The election authorities were quick to repair the technical snags in no time.
There was a tough contest in six key constituencies in Nashik reigion. Jamner constituency, from where state water resource minister Girish Mahajan is contesting, registered 61.16% voter turnout.
Mahajan told media persons that he was confident that the BJP-Sena alliance would win 215 seats in the state and bag 38 of the total 47 seats in the five districts of Nashik division.
Commenting on the Sena and BJP rebel candidates in the state, Mahajan said they would hardly be able to make a difference in the results of the state assembly elections. “We will win at least 215 seats. The margin will be affected to some extent,” said Mahajan.
He further exuded confidence while stating that BJP would retain all the three seats in Nashik city.
Muktainagar, from where former revenue minister Eknath Khadse’s daughter Rohini Khadse is contesting, registered 60.48% voter turnout.
Karjat Jamkhed constituency in Ahmednagar district, from where Rohit Pawar, a third generation member of Sharad Pawar’s family, and two-time MLA and water conservation minister Ram Shinde are contesting, registered 68.64 % voter turnout.
Shirdi constituency, from where former leader of opposition in the state assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil is contesting the poll battle, registered 63.92% voter turnout.
Nawapur constituency in Nashik district, from where BJP’s Bharat Gavit—son of nine-term Congress MP Manikrao Gavit, registered 70.04% voter turnout.
Sindkheda constituency in Dhule district, from where state tourism minister Jaykumar Rawal is contesting, registered 57.60 % voter turnout.
Overall polling peaceful in Nashik city
Commissioner of police, Nashik city, Vishwas Nangare Patil said barring a couple of incidents of people clicking selfies near the EVMs after casting their vote, the polling process was peaceful in the entire city. “The large scale preventive action taken by police of externing criminals out of the city and the district went a long way in preventing untoward incidents. Apart from the huge bandobast, close to 80 teams of striking force were prepared and deployed all over the city to disperse the crowd at polling stations. Those who had cast their vote were told to go home immediately. Only the people who had not cast their vote were allowed to stay at polling stations.”
Meanwhile, superintendent of Nashik rural police Arti Singh said that there were two cases of people clicking selfies near the EVMs in Kalwan and Satana. Another case of campaigning for a Shiv Sena candidate within 100 metres of a polling station in Wadner Khakurdi was registered in the rural district. Barring these three incidents, the voting was peaceful throughout the district. Singh said that she ensured that she monitored the bandobast in Malegaon herself, given the communally sensitive background of the textile town.