BMC elections- the quiet affair

MUMBAI:  The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) elections went peacefully as votes were cast for 2,200 candidates that stood for 227 seats.

“Barring few stray incidences the day was peaceful and no news of any violence was reported,” M U Dalvi, spokesperson of Mumbai police said. He added that the police control room received many calls however there was not any case of election related disturbance, “The polling was peaceful all through,” he said on Thursday evening after the voting was over in all the election centers.

Twenty year old Golandam Nauman pushed his 92 year old grandmother, Shareefa Bi Hussain’s wheelchair to the Nagapada polling center so she could cast her vote. “She said she wanted to vote so I drove her to the center and then I realized that there were few more people like her in our neighborhood. I could not vote as my name was missing from the list so I thought of compensating this way,” he said.

”Even as party workers helped the voters find their exact booth by setting up help desks near the canters, places like Cusrow Baug saw a low turnout. “People have lost hope, when all the options are inconsequential why should people vote?” a senior citizen residing in Cusrow Baug, Colaba said. However, polling booths in Indira Nagar, Kurla saw long queues from early morning as many first time voters exercised their right. Group of boys said that they enjoyed the holiday and came to vote for the experience, “We want to see how the AVM works…we will decide whom to vote on the last minute,” they giggled as they waited for their turn.

Tired of seeing money influence voters, 25 year old Durrat-U-Sharaf Mithaiwala said that she wanted to vote for a candidate who was not rich,” For many days I have been seeing party workers distributing food at the Bharat Jhopadpatti. I know they will disappear when we need them, which is why I want to vote for someone who doesn’t have a lot of money and wants to serve the people, not pay them to vote,” she said. She however had not made up her mind on any candidate or party.

Eighty one year old Abdul Kareem who cast his vote in Dongri, one of the four hyper sensitive centers, said that he had never been more confused about voting, “Its like choosing the lesser devil, they are all bad- I am going to vote for the lesser one. Earlier people fought elections to serve the people but not anymore; the choice of candidates is depressing.”

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