Poll managers in Chennai also admitted to DTNext that non-inducement to voters had also forced many to go on a long vacation or just stay at home enjoying the holiday.
It may be noted that South Chennai recorded the least voter turnout of 56.34 per cent followed by Central Chennai 58.69 per cent. North Chennai recorded 63.48 per cent. “At least 12,000 votes were not polled in pockets of Aminjikarai and MM Colony and Chetpet and these were public who were evacuated as part of Chennai river restoration project. They do not have houses, but still, their names persist in voters roll coming under Anna Nagar Assembly constituency,” said former Chennai corporation floor leader Sukumar Babu, who is now the AMMK district secretary of South Chennai. We wanted to provide transport but due to the model code of conduct rules, we were unable to reach to those voters who were shifted to the outskirts. Names of voters had also vanished from Villivakkam and Egmore and the AMMK functionaries are collecting the details in this regard, Babu added.
“Even before the polling started, there were locked houses in Central Chennai and this resulted in poor polling. This time it was only our party leader Thalapathi Stalin, who was the crowd puller working tirelessly. Such hard work and efforts were not put by many DMK functionaries and this is also a reason for poor polling in North and Central Chennai,” said R Purushoth, a former DMK ward secretary in North Chennai.
“There will always be missing voters due to the shifting of houses in Chennai. There is no proper door to door enumeration. There has to be dedicated full-time election department staff in the Corporation and the additional charge given ahead of polls had been failing, again and again, resulting in low voter turnout,” said a presiding officer in Adyar zone.