October 18th, 2011
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Peaceful elections in Madurai

madurai elections Madurai: For the first time in the recent history of Madurai Corporation, the local body election went off peacefully without a single case being registered against anyone for electoral malpractice or criminal indulgence. City’s senior officials including the district collector U Sagayam, superintendent of police Asra Garg and commissioner of police P Kannappan, who were on the move throughout the day can justifiably take pride in ensuring an event-free polling.

Madurai city had 1,121 polling booths with 4,000 EVMs in use. Union minister M K Alagiri came with his family and cast his vote at the polling booth in TVS school near his residence. Since he is known for his pithy post-vote comments, the media sought him out afterwards but he refused to respond and walked away.

Ministers Sellur Raju and R B Udayakumar exercised their franchise in booths in Meenakshi College and Ambika College respectively. Voting started off on a brisk note and slackened during the day before picking up in the evening. The 17th ward of the Madurai corporation has the highest number of candidates, 21, contesting for this seat while the number of contestants were lowest in the 70th ward with just three candidates seeking popular mandate.

Madurai corporation has a total of 9,94,424 voters, with men outnumbering the women at 4,98,586. As it was a holiday, the city’s busy roads were deserted. AIADMK’s mayoral candidate V V Rajan Chellappa told media persons that he was confident his party would sweep the elections. Other mayor candidates were no less optimistic about the poll outcome.

Muddy roads leading to the booths made it difficult for elderly persons to go into them. Many of them needed the assistance of younger people. “I hope, the next council, takes steps to make Madurai cleaner, if not more beautiful,” said S Saraswathi, a voter in Melamadai.

There were 827 councillor candidates in fray today as the election for ward 15 was cancelled due to the death of the AIADMK candidate S P Jebamani and seven of his counterparts were also out of the race. Siruajudeen, a candidate of the 39th ward made allegations of booth capturing against his AIADMK, DMK and independent counterparts but it was found to be a false alarm. 5,455 government personnel and 2,500 police personnel were on duty in the city on Monday.




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