Uttarakhand Assembly Elections: Over 81 lakh voters will decide the fate of 632 candidates on Monday

Over 81 lakh voters are set to decide the fate of 632 candidates in Uttarakhand on Monday. This will be the fifth assembly election after the formation of the state in 2000.

Voting will be held from 8 am to 6 pm in 70 assembly seats in 13 districts of the state.

Voting in the state ended on Saturday evening. Apart from door-to-door campaigning, political parties conducted virtual as well as physical rallies.

Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami, his cabinet colleagues Satpal Maharaj, Subodh Uniyal, Arvind Pandey, Dhan Singh Rawat and Rekha Arya, besides state BJP president Madan Kaushik are among the few important candidates whose fate will be decided in these elections.

Prominent Congress faces include former Chief Minister Harish Rawat, former minister Yashpal Arya, State Congress President Ganesh Godiyal and Leader of Opposition in the Fourth Assembly Pritam Singh.

Star campaigners from the BJP, Congress, Aam Aadmi Party and Samajwadi Party organized rallies to seek votes for their candidates during the election campaign, which was held for the most part amid the Covid restrictions.

The names include Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, Gopal Rai and Bahujan Samaj Party. (BSP) supremo Mayawati.

Seeking a second consecutive term, BJP leaders have warned voters against the “appeasement policy” of the Congress and sought votes for the party. He highlighted the ongoing major road, rail and air connectivity projects in the state and projects in the pipeline, apart from the reconstruction of Kedarnath in the last five years.

Meanwhile, the Congress party, which is trying to regain lost ground after its defeat at the hands of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the 2017 assembly elections, sharply raised the issues of inflation, unemployment and change of chief ministers. The party is in power to put spokes in its wheels.

In the last assembly elections, out of the total 70 seats in Uttarakhand, BJP had won 57, while Congress had won only 11. Two seats were won by independents.

This time the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is also fielding its candidates from all the 70 assembly constituencies of the state.

During election campaigns and rallies, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) accused the Congress and BJP governments in the state of not fulfilling the aspirations of the people, which led to the formation of Uttarakhand in 2000.

The AAP party, in its promises to the people of Uttarakhand, has given free electricity up to 300 units to every household, Rs 1,000 per month to every woman above 18 years, jobs in every household and many free facilities including unemployment. 5,000 per month allowance till they get a job to woo voters.

Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Soumya said that there are a total of 81,72,173 voters in the state and 11,697 polling stations spread over 8,624 places, which do not use surnames.

Meanwhile, for the first time in the state, a total of 101 women polling stations named ‘Sakhi’ polling stations have been set up. All polling officers at these booths will be women, the CEO said, adding that this has been done to encourage women’s participation in the voting process.

He also said that six polling stations have also been set up to be manned by persons with disabilities. Presiding officers and polling personnel at such booths will be handicapped.