By Raju Vernekar
Mumbai, Oct 22
Union Minister of Textiles Minister Smriti Irani cast her vote in Versova Assembly constituency at polling centre located at Swami Samarth Nagar, Andheri West in North West Mumbai, even as voting for Maharashtra assembly held on Monday. The counting will be held on Thursday.
On arrival Irani was greeted by BJP workers and she was also blessed by a local resident 93 year old Khanna uncle. Khanna, an ex army man had cast her vote early in the morning.
Turning to media persons, Irani used the elderly man’s example to encourage others to come and vote. “Today’s hero is Khanna ji...he had served in Army,” Irani said. “He is 93 and came out to vote early in the morning. It is an inspiration to people to come out and vote,” the Amethi MP said. She went on to add that “If at 93 he can vote, who is stopping you?”. The nonagenarian who in any case active, participates in all festivals and recites aarti without fail.
After casting her vote, Irani also interacted with local BJP workers. Kajal Rochwani, Atul Malviya, Kashi Kanojia and others were present.
Although the voting percentage was low till afternoon, by 6 PM at the close of voting the voter turnout in Maharashtra was recorded at 55.31 percent. The voting in rural areas was high compared to urban areas. Total percentage was expected to go up to 60 per cent, after final figures.
Earlier in the day a Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) leader Sunil Khambe, threw ink on the EVM in a polling booth situated in Thane Head Post Office, as a protest against alleged “misuse of EVMs”. He threw ink on the machine after he had cast his vote in the Assembly polls in progress state-wide. While being bundled into the police van, he told reporters that he did this as EVMs were making a “mockery of democracy”..
Raju Vernekar is a Media Professional based in Mumbai and is a regular contributor of Imphal Times. He had served as Chief Reporter at Free Press Journal (1996 – 2015 ). His Activities includes writing for different news papers, script writing/production for TV channels, Films Division. Writing poems in Marathi, Hindi, English, Guiding mass media students and helping people to solve their problems. Raju may be contacted at [email protected]