Puducherry Election 2021: UT registers 81.64% polling as Congress-led SDA locks horns with NDA in bid to regain turf – Politics News , Firstpost

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Yanam registered the highest polling percentage of 91.27 percent and the Mahe region recorded the lowest turnout at 73.53 percent. Polling was by and large peaceful

Electors queue outside a polling station in Puducherry. Image courtesy: Twitter@ceopuducherry

A high voter turnout was recorded in the Puducherry Assembly election on Tuesday, with the Congress along with its ally DMK locked in a keen contest to regain turf in the Union Territory.

An estimated 81.64 percent of the 10.04 lakh voters exercised their franchise on Tuesday for the 30 Assembly seats in the Union Territory.

An official source said that Yanam registered the highest polling percentage of 91.27 percent and the Mahe region recorded the lowest turnout at 73.53 percent. Polling was by and large peaceful.

A health department release said 510 COVID-19 patients also cast their franchise with full protective gear in the last hour of the polling, from 6 pm to 7 pm.

Puducherry witnessed a contest between the AINRC-led NDA and the Congress-led Secular Democratic alliance. While AINRC fielded candidates in 16 of the total 30 constituencies the BJP is contesting nine seats, while the AIADMK is contesting five seats.

Yanam, where the AINRC leader N Rangasamy is contesting, registered a higher percentage of polling than other regions. The Congress has fielded candidates in 14 out of the 15 seats; the national party is supporting an Independent in Yanam.

The DMK, its main alliance partner, has fielded candidates in 13 seats and the VCK and CPI are contesting from one constituency each.

The election is seen as a crucial battle for both the Congress-led SDA and the NDA, as the former makes a bid to regain power it lost just before the elections.

The V Narayanasamy-led Congress government in the UT had collapsed in February after seven MLAs resigned one after another. Two of these MLAs later joined the BJP.

The NDA, under N Rangasamy, is also keen to win a majority and form the government.

Among key contestants trying their electoral fortunes are AINRC leader and former chief minister N Rangasamy, heading the National Democratic Alliance, with the other constituents being the BJP and the AIADMK.

Rangasamy is seeking election from the Thattanchady Assembly seat in the Puducherry region as well as in Yanam, an enclave of the UT. Former Congress leader A Namassivayam is contesting on a BJP ticket from Manadipet, new turf for him.

Former ministers MOHF Shah Jahan and R Kamalakannanare are the other big names in the fray.

The counting of votes is slated for 2 May.

With inputs from PTI



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