CHENNAI: Polling in the by-elections to 530 urban and rural local bodies in the State went off peacefully on Thursday except for a few stray incidents and the poll percentage was moderate.
As many as 1,486 candidates were in fray. Apart from the ruling AIADMK, BJP, CPI, CPM and independents contested, while DMK and its allies boycotted the elections. In Coimbatore and Tuticorin Corporations, the voting percentage was lower than the 2011 mayoral elections. In Coimbatore, 46.53 per cent votes were polled while 53.89 per cent voters exercised their franchise in Tuticorin.
The poll percentage in four municipalities are as follows: Arakonam (45 pc), Ramanathapuram (53.93 pc), Vriddhachalam (64.73 pc) and Cuddalore (5962). One ward in Cuddalore municipality recorded 74.65 per cent.
In the election to town panchayats and its ward members, 73.34 per cent voters exercised their franchise. In the district panchayats ward members, panchayat union ward members and village panchayat chairpersons and ward members, 68 per cent votes were polled.
In Coimbatore, the polling went off peacefully but voter turnout was poor (46.53 per cent) when compared to the 59.71 per cent polling in the 2011 mayoral election in the city. Of the total 12,90,652 voters in the Coimbatore Corporation limit, 6,00,580 cast their votes. This includes 3,10,042 men (47.5 pc) and 2,90,533 women (45.55 pc).
In Tuticorin too, the polling percentage was low. Only 53.89 per cent of voters exercised their franchise. In 2011, the voting percentage stood at 67.4. The percentage of votes cast in the districts are as follows: Vellore (53 pc), Tiruvannamalai (69.89 pc), Krishnagiri (70.20 pc), Erode (62.19 pc), Namakkal (78 pc), Tirupur (61.66 pc), Karur (75 pc), Pudukottai (63 pc), Thanjavur (74 pc), Tiruchy (65 pc), Tirunelveli (61.85 pc) and Kanyakumari (54 pc)