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Nithari goes to poll sans voter enthusiasm

An eerie silence prevailed in Nithari village on the polling day as the usual humdrum associated with elections was missing.

india Updated: Apr 13, 2007 12:39 IST
Manoj CG

No posters, no banners and no long queues outside polling booths -- this is Nithari village, infamous for the macabre killing of children and women, where elections for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly took place on Friday.

An eerie silence prevailed in this non-descript village on the polling day as the usual humdrum associated with elections was missing, though brisk polling was visible in other areas of Dadri constituency during the second phase of Assembly polls.

People, mainly women, trickled into the polling booth set up barely 200 metres away from the D-5 "house of horror" of businessman Moninder Singh Pandher, where about 20 children and women were sexually assaulted and brutally murdered.

Tight security was in place near the polling booth, the area which witnessed many an emotional scenes and pitched battles between angry locals and police.

Leaders, prominent and local, did not turn up here during the campaign in this "jinxed village" which has a reputation of "ensuring the unseating" of Chief Ministers whoever visited the area.

"May be because of Nithari, these leaders are not coming here," Anita, a vegetable vendor hailing from Malda in West Bengal, said.

The constituency is witnessing a four-cornered contest with BJP fielding its sitting MLA Nawab Singh Nagar. While BSP has nominated Satbir Singh Gujjar for the seat, SP has fielded Ashok Chouhan and Congress Raghuraj Singh.

Congress young turk Rahul Gandhi has campaigned for Singh on the last day of the campaigning. There are another 11 candidates trying their luck in the constituency.