Daijiworld Media Network – Mangalore (SP)
Mangalore, Jan 3: Even as political parties and their candidates are trying to figure out their prospects by calculating voter turn out, village-wise polling, in addition to other permutations and combinations in a hazy scenario created by not too enthusiastic response of the electoral for the recently concluded zilla panchayat (ZP) and taluk panchayat (TP) elections, the state election commission has made arrangements to count the votes commencing from 8 am on Tuesday January 4.
Unlike the previous elections in which ballot boxes were used, electronic voting machines have been put to use for the first time for zilla and taluk panchayat elections in the state. In the past, counting of votes used to take a full day. Compared to that, the counting this time is expected to take only a couple of hours, as the EVMs give out candidate-wise voting pattern at the push of a button. For the electoral staff too, the tedious workload, request for recounting etc., witnessed in previous elections, will be a thing of the past.
The voters of the coastal districts have shown less enthusiasm in these elections, as compared to the Lok Sabha and assembly elections. A drop of nearly 10% in voter turn out has been witnessed. Some political parties are worried that this might turn out to their detriment, while others are optimistic that this phenomenon would work to their advantage.
The ZP and TP elections have also evoked more interest in political circles than the gram panchayat (GP) election held earlier, as unlike in GP election, ZP and TP elections are fought on party symbols. The results of these elections are likely to have a bearing on the future of the leadership of some political parties, and also on the ministry formation in the state. These elections also will be first the litmus test for the trouble-ridden Yeddyurappa government, as this is the first referendum after the assembly election, to be fought on the basis of party symbols.