Lok Sabha elections 2019 Phase 6: All eyes on Delhi in 6th round of polling for Lok Sabha elections
Between the 2009 and 2014 parliamentary elections, Delhi saw the most impressive growth in turnout among metropolitan cities, with a 13.3 percentage point increase – from 51.8% to 65.1%. Analysts attribute this to the wave of engaged political activism that was created largely by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) although the party itself wasn’t the beneficiary of this. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won all seven parliamentary seats in the country’s capital.
Indeed, since the 1960s, Delhi has mostly voted in favour of the party that goes on to win the Lok Sabha elections.
To be sure, 2014 saw an increase in turnout at the national level too, to 66.4% from 58.2% in 2009, an increase many attribute to the Narendra Modi wave (and the strong anti-incumbency sentiment against the United Progressive Alliance). This year, Chennai has seen a slight fall in turnout to 59.4% from 61.5% in 2014, but Mumbai has seen an increase from 51.5% to 55.3%.
Overall turnout numbers at the national level are just about a percentage point less than in 2014. Among the four metropolitan cities in India, polling for the 2019 general election has finished in Mumbai and Chennai. Kolkata will vote in the seventh phase of elections on May 19 while Delhi will go to polls in the sixth phase on Sunday.
The four cities account for 18 parliamentary constituencies (PCs). Seven of them are in Delhi, two in Kolkata, three in Chennai and six in Mumbai. To be sure, some parts of these cities might not be included in these PCs. For example, the Salt Lake locality in Kolkata is a part of Barasat PC in Bengal rather than the Kolkata North or Kolkata South PCs.
In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, Kolkata saw the highest voter turnout at 68.1% among these four cities. Delhi was a close second.
Among the 18 PCs in the four cities, increase in voter turnout was the highest in South Delhi, 15.5 percentage points. The turnout dropped in just two PCs, Chennai North and Chennai South.
Statistics for the 2019 elections show that Mumbai and Chennai have maintained the trend in voter turnout which was seen between 2009 and 2014. Voter turnout in Mumbai has risen by four percentage points while the figure in Chennai has dropped further by two percentage points. It remains to be seen whether Delhi can maintain the pace of increase in voter turnout it has shown between 2009 and 2014. While increase in voter turnout in Delhi has been impressive between 2009 and 2014, it was marginally below the all-India voter turnout figure of 66.4% in 2014.
Voter turnout in Delhi has been lower than the national figure in all general elections since 1989. Can it buck that trend this time?
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After the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) landslide victory, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is in his Lok Sabha constituency of Varanasi on a thanksgiving visit on Monday.He marked his visit by offering prayers at the Kashi Vishwanath temple before heading to address party workers.Modi won the Varanasi parliamentary seat by a margin 4,79,505 votes, defeating his nearest rival Shalini Yadav of the Samajwadi Party.Follow highlights here: