Lok Sabha Elections 2024: President Murmu, Jaishankar, Atishi, Gautam Gambhir among early voters in Delhi

- May 25, 2024
| By : Patriot Bureau |

Voting for seven constituencies of Delhi -- Chandni Chowk, North East Delhi, East Delhi, New Delhi, North West Delhi, West Delhi and South Delhi -- began at 7 am

President Droupadi Murmu held up held up her inked finger after casting vote in New Delhi

President Droupadi Murmu cast her vote in the New Delhi Lok Sabha constituency on Saturday, officials said.

Murmu reached the polling booth at Dr Rajendra Prasad Kendriya Vidyalaya, inside the President’s Estate, around 9 am.

After voting, she posed for photos with her inked finger outside the polling booth, which was decorated in pink and white colours.

Voting for the seven constituencies of Delhi—Chandni Chowk, North East Delhi, East Delhi, New Delhi, North West Delhi, West Delhi, and South Delhi—began at 7 am on Saturday, with people queuing up outside booths across the city from early morning to escape the summer heat.

A total of 1.52 crore voters, including 82 lakh men, 69 lakh women, and 1,228 from the third gender category, are eligible to cast their votes at more than 13,000 polling booths across the seven constituencies. There are more than 2.52 lakh first-time voters this time.

Murmu, who hails from Odisha, was sworn in as the 15th President of India on July 25, 2022. She received her new voter identification card with the updated address on November 28 last year. Her old voter ID carried her Odisha address.

Other early morning voters included Union ministers S. Jaishankar and Hardeep Singh Puri, Delhi Minister Atishi, outgoing East Delhi MP Gautam Gambhir, and candidates of different parties. Jaishankar, the first voter at Atal Adarsh Vidyalaya, APJ Abdul Kalam Lane, in the New Delhi constituency, expressed his hope for a large voter turnout. Puri cast his vote at Mount Carmel School, Anand Niketan, and described the voting process as a celebration of democracy.

Atishi voted at Nigam Pratibha Vidyalaya, Kalkaji B Block, in the South Delhi constituency, while Gambhir cast his vote at the Government Sarvodaya Kanya Vidyalya and urged people to exercise their franchise.

The AAP’s South Delhi candidate Sahi Ram Pahalwan, the BJP’s Chandni Chowk nominee Praveen Khandelwal, and its New Delhi hopeful Bansuri Swaraj were among the early voters.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, in a post on X, appealed to the people to vote and encourage their family members and friends to do the same.

“…Each vote cast by you in this great festival of democracy will be against the authoritarian mindset and strengthen democracy and the Constitution of India. Go to the polling stations and assert that there is democracy in India and democracy will remain in India through your votes,” Kejriwal said.

A ‘yellow’ warning is in place for the day, with the Met office predicting the temperature could reach a maximum of 44 degrees Celsius. The Delhi poll body has made arrangements for voters to beat the scorching heat.

Voting is underway peacefully with no reports of any untoward incidents. Deputy Commissioner of Police (Central) M. Harsha Vardhan said that conducting free and fair elections is a matter of great pride for everyone involved and expressed enthusiasm for a good voter turnout.

The BJP, aiming for a clean sweep for the third consecutive time, won all seven seats in Delhi in the 2014 and 2019 elections. The opposition INDIA bloc partners AAP and the Congress are contesting the elections in Delhi under a four-three seat-share formula, fielding joint candidates for the first time.

AAP has fielded Kuldeep Kumar from the East Delhi constituency, Mahabal Mishra from West Delhi, Somnath Bharti from New Delhi, and Pahalwan from South Delhi. The Congress has nominated JP Agarwal from Chandni Chowk, Kanhaiya Kumar from North East Delhi, and Udit Raj from North West Delhi.

The BJP candidates include Manoj Tiwari from North East Delhi, the only sitting MP to be renominated by the party, Ramvir Singh Bidhuri from South Delhi, Swaraj from New Delhi, Harsh Deep Malhotra from East Delhi, Yogendra Chandolia from North West Delhi, Khandelwal from Chandni Chowk, and Kamaljeet Sehrawat from West Delhi. (With inputs from PTI)