Confusion may have affected Muslim turnout

Written By Unknown on Kamis, 16 Oktober 2014 | 22.23

MUMBAI: Confusion due to a multiplicity of choices and lack of enthusiasm again resulted in a less than 50% turnout in areas with a concentration of Muslims like Mumbadevi, Mankhurd Shivaji Nagar and Byculla. Despite appeals from community leaders and activists, the response of Muslim voters remained lukewarm.

"Multiple choices of secular candidates confused Muslim voters. If there was a Congress-NCP alliance, the percentage of voting in Muslim-majority localities could have been higher," said activist Saeed Khan.

In Mumbadevi, where sitting Congress MLA Amin Patel faces a challenge from over a dozen Muslim candidates, including legendary playback singer Mohammed Rafi's son Shahid Mohammed Rafi of the MIM, the percentage of voting was similar as in 2009 (37%). "I can't say why the percentage of voting is chronically low in my area. But I know that I am winning as the potential spoilers didn't get much support," hoped Patel.

In Mankhurd-Shivaji Nagar, the Samajwadi Party's sitting MLA Abu Asim Azmi and Yusuf Abrahni of the Congress appeared to have divided most Muslim votes.

"There is a clear shift of Muslim votes from the Congress in the city to the BJP and MIM," said Salim Alware of the Indian Muslim Intellectual Forum.

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