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Capital sets a record: 63%, on till 9 pm
At over 60 per cent, Saturday's Assembly elections saw one of the highest voter turnouts in Delhi's history. Before this, the highest turnout was marked in 1993 when Madan Lal Khurana led the BJP to power when a total of 61.75 per cent of the electorate voted.
Chief Electoral Officer Satbir Sailas Bedi said the elections were "by and large peaceful", with some minor incidents of violence during the polling, which began at 8 am and went on till well past 9 pm in many of the 69 constituencies that went to the polls.
In an unprecedented decision, the election commission was forced tp extend polling hours till 9 pm in some constituencies due to the long serpentine queues. Final figures could not be compiled as the polling was still on till after 7 pm in places like Keshavpuram and Bhatti Mines.
"There were long queues in these constituencies, with maximum number of people turning up after 5 pm (when polling was officially scheduled to get over)," Bedi said. There was a quantum jump in the polling percentage this year as compared to the last two elections: in 2003 the voter turnout was 53.4 per cent, and in 1998 it was 49 per cent.
The maximum voter turnout, till late Saturday evening, was reported from the Northeast district: the approximate figures with the election officers stood at a phenomenal 61 per cent. Northeast Delhi was followed closely by Southwest, which showed 60 per cent turnout. Not far behind was North district — with approximately 58 per cent turnout — and Trinagar fared the best among the constituencies with a turnout of 62 per cent.
Wazirpur and Model Town showed the least voter turnout in North district at 56 per cent.