Maharashtra Assembly polls: 2.8% of Mumbai’s votes went to NOTA, state sees 0.91% rise from 2014
The Worli constituency, from where Shiv Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray contested and won, saw third highest NOTA votes at 6,305.Updated: Oct 26, 2019, 17:49 IST
The city’s areas plagued with most debated local issues – Jogeshwari, Borivali and Kurla – polled the maximum number of NOTA (none-of-the-above) votes, besides areas such as Worli, Malabar Hill and Charkop, where high-profile candidates are contesting the elections. Of the 19.28 lakh votes polled in Mumbai, 1.42 lakh, or 2.88 per cent went to NOTA.
Jogeshwari and Borivali, which saw 12,031 and 10,095 NOTA votes, are around the Aarey Milk Colony, which was in the news over the hacking of 2,000 trees to construct the Metro car shed. Kurla saw the fifth highest NOTA votes in the city at 5,200 votes. The area sees residents living near Mithi’s river’s banks being evacuated every monsoon. Incidentally, Jogeshwari and Borivali saw among the highest voter turnout in the city, at 52.88% and 54.97%, over the city’s average of 50.51%.
The Worli constituency, from where Shiv Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray contested and won, saw third highest NOTA votes at 6,305. Similarly, the Malabar Hill constituency, from where BJP’s city president Mangal Prabhat Lodha contested and won, saw 5,392 NOTA votes.
Political analyst Abhay Deshpande said, “NOTA is a tool for the middle class and upper middle class voters to register protest. It is directly linked to a literate and politically active electorate. People who register NOTA votes take the trouble of going to a polling booth, but not voting for any party, which means issues plaguing their area matter to them.”
In Charkop, the constituency of minister of state for urban development development (UDD) Yogesh Sagar, 4,927 NOTA votes were registered. Four of the five constituencies that saw the lowest NOTA votes elected Opposition candidates, including Anushakti Nagar where NCP’s Nawab Malik got elected, Dharavi where Congress’s Varsha Gaikwad won, Mumbadevi where Congress’s Amin Patel was elected, and Mankhurd where Samajwadi Party’s Abu Azmi was elected.
Overall, in the Maharashtra Assembly Elections this time, several constituencies saw NOTA finish close second. In Latur Rural Assembly seat, brother of actor Ritesh Deshmukh’s and son of former Maharashtra CM Vilasrao Deshmukh, Dhiraj Deshmukh won the contest, it was NOTA which clinched 13.78% of the vote.
Even Nagpur South West constituency, which Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis defended, saw 1.59% of the votes swing in favour of NOTA.
NOTA was first introduced in 2014 polling elections following a 2013 Supreme Court verdict. The apex court ha d given the verdict in order to make sure that political parties be forced to project clean candidates.