South Delhi’s Greater Kailash-I, which in the last polls had seen the lowest turnout (37.3%), gained by more than five percentage points this time with the ward registering 42.44% votes.
Despite the sweltering heat, people in other posh colonies too stepped out of their homes to vote. Vasant Kunj, for example, also set a positive example by casting 45.18% votes compared to 39.43% in 2012. Back in the 2007 civic polls, the ward had seen only 25% voter turnout.
Vasant Vihar also saw an increase of 3.38 percentage points with 43.3% people coming out to vote. While all these constituencies probably have seen the highest ever turnout, they still remained way below the city average of 54-55% during the last two civic polls.
Most people Hindustan Times spoke to in the posh South Delhi colonies said they voted for better civic services. “I am voting this time because I am saddened to see the unhygienic conditions in my locality. What’s the point of calling it a posh colony if basic fogging is also not done at regular intervals,” said Indu, a resident of GK-I.
Sixty nine-year-old Umesh Kochar, a trader living in Defence Colony, felt sanitation, or rather the lack of it, was the deciding factor behind his vote. “Even posh colonies become hell if the safai karamcharis don’t do their work. This election is vital as the municipal corporations provide these basic facilities,” Kochar said.
However, Rajender Bharadwaj, a resident of Vasant Kunj said the high voter turnout in the affluent colonies could be for a different reason. “One of the reasons behind the increasing turnout is that most of the prominent candidates were from village areas such as Rajokri, Masoodpur and Mehrauli and people in villages come out to vote more than posh colonies,” he said.
With inputs from Vibha Sharma