As the poll campaigns of political parties end on Sunday, ahead of the Nagpur Municipal Corporation elections, officials have stated that while 60% voter turnout is achievable and manageable, a turnout of 70% voters is too ambitious. In 2012 the total percentage of voter turnout was 52, in which BJP secured 63 seats of the 145-member House.
With each Prabhag consisting four wards, in the Prabhag system of election, each voter will have to press four buttons as each fray has the option of four political party candidates. Hence at least 90 seconds is the estimated time allotted for each voter in Nagpur’s 2,783 booths. According to an official, 700 voters are set to be accommodated in each booth, which means accommodation of a total number of 19.50 lakh voters.
The Indian Express quoted the top official, saying, “Nagpur has a list of 21 lakh voters, of which about 15 per cent are either repetitive or not active on various counts. That comes to around 3 lakh voters. So, presuming even 60 per cent voting, we will have about 420 voters coming to each booth. With each taking 90 seconds, we will have to have at least 10 hours of continuous voting. Actual voting hours are nine, but are always stretched since all those in queue towards the end have to be allowed to go through. Thus, 60 per cent polling seems achievable. A figure of 70 per cent is too ambitious.”
While both major parties, BJP and Congress have their dedicated voters in the city, BJP, after rift with the RSS cadres, which is a major part of its vote bank, will have to hope for a high voter turnout. But things might turn favourable for the Congress party with the voter count between 50 and 55 per cent.