Udupi: The Udupi district has recorded around 70.57% polling in the gram panchayat elections on Friday May 29. By and large the polling was peaceful in the district.
Karkala taluk recorded highest percentage of polling with 75.07 percent followed by Kundapur taluk—67 percent and Udupi taluk—69.64 percent. There was good response in the Naxal infested areas of the district where a large number to voters exercised their franchise.
Selected people representatives who were residing in the gram panchayat limits cast their votes in their respective polling booths. Former Minister and present MLA Kota Srinivas Poojary cast his vote at Kotatattu gram panchayat. MLC Prathapchandra Shetty voted in Albadi gram panchayat. Byndoor MLA Gopal Poojary voted at Katbelthoor gram panchayat.
As many as 4,740 candidates contested for the 2398 seats in 155 gram Panchayats in Udupi district. Though the number of available seats are 2,398, a total of 272 members have been elected unopposed.
For the 733 seats in 62 gram panchayats in Kundapur taluk, a total of 1693 candidates are in fray. Two thousand and eighty two candidates are contesting for 941 seats in 59 gram panchayats of Udupi taluk and 965 candidates are contesting for 452 seats of 34 GPs in Karkala taluk.
The district recorded an average 50 percent of polling at around 1 pm. Udupi taluk registered 50 percent, Kundapur taluk recorded 47 percent and Karkala 53 percent of polling at 1 pm.
The district registered 59.66 percent polling at 3 pm. The senior citizens irrespective of their ailing condition were seen casting their votes.
One Chandu Poojarthy aged 89 cast her vote at the Government Higher Primary School, Amasebailu Kundapur Taluk. Fathima Bi aged 85 cast her vote at the Government Urdu Higher Primary School Hoode.
Radhamma a resident of Goraje, aged about 90 years said that she has voted in every election. Her grandson Vishnu helped her out to reach the polling station at the Government Higher Primary School, Kasadi.
Thambdi Bai a resident of Haladi, aged about 79 years belonging to the Kudbi community was dressed in traditional attire. She was accompanied by her family members to the polling station.
Subraya Salvanker a resident of Perdoor aged about 85 expressed his feelings of fulfilling his duty of voting saying, every citizen of our country should cast his vote as it leads to the development of our nation.
Voting in Naxal affected areas went on smoothly. 6 polling stations in Naxal affected areas in Hebri reported no inconvenience nor any untoward incidents. 4 polling stations in Nadpalu and 2 in Kabbinele were provided with Kerala Armed Force, Karnataka Industrial Security Force and Anti-Naxal Force.
The cool climate brought relief to the voters and officers in the polling stations. Heavy rainfall witnessed in Kundapur led to traffic chaos.
Counting of the votes will be held on June 5 at St Cicely’s School Udupi, Bhandarkar’s College Kundapur and Jaycees School Karkala.