GHMC polls: Poor turnout gives TRS great hope

Deccan Chronicle.

Nation, Politics

In the BJP camp, leaders appeared concerned that their high-energy campaign did not result in mobilisation of voters

Voters stand in a queue to cast their votes for GHMC elections at Parsigutta.(DC Image:SSR)

Hyderabad: The low voter turnout in Tuesday’s elections has left the BJP and the Congress worried, more particularly the former which had mounted a massive campaign to win more wards in the GHMC, which covers 24 Assembly segments and five Lok Sabha constituencies.

With the final voting percentage figures coming in, the TRS sounded more confident that it would form the GHMC Council for the second term running. The AIMIM also sounded comfortable and even hoped to wrest Ghansi Bazaar which it had lost by a few votes in 2016.

Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao has called for a meeting of party election incharges of all divisions at Pragathi Bhavan on Wednesday to get a sense of the polling trends. Sources said that he cautioned the leaders against making any claims with regard to the numbers till the party reviews the situation with more data at hand.

Sources said that the ground reports as of Tuesday night indicated that the TRS had a clear edge in 75 divisions. TRS leaders spoke of the general political belief that a low voter turnout always favours the incumbent.

In the BJP camp, leaders appeared concerned that their high-energy campaign did not result in mobilisation of voters. Sources revealed that the low turnout may put paid to the party’s hopes of increasing its seat share to 50. The estimate at this time is 15 to 20 seats.

TRS leaders said that the election-eve dharna of BJP activists, who alleged that its state president Bandi Sanjay had been attacked at MS Maktha had only served to highlight the nervousness ahead of polling day.

The Congress feared that those who voted might get swayed by the communal-centric poll campaign of the BJP, TRS and the MIM. The Congress leaders hoped to win eight to 10 seats based on their focus on development.

In the Old City, the voting appeared to continue to be one-sided. The MIM leaders felt that if more people had turned out to vote, there would have been scope for a keen contest. That did not happen, and the party hopes to retain its 44 division it won in 2016.