Women voters on the riseMar 20th, 2009 | By editor | Category: Union Territories
Rajesh B. Nair
PUDUCHERRY: The Union Territory has been witnessing a steady increase in the number of women voters in all the Assembly segments. In all the electoral rolls prepared during frequent intervals from 2002, there had been a steep rise in the number of women voters.
For the first time in the history of the Union Territory, the intensive electoral revision carried out in the year 2002 showed the number of women voters increasing by more than 14,000. When compared to 3,27,944 male voters, there were a total of 3,42,515 women voters in the electoral roll prepared after the intensive revision.
The increase in the number of women voters went up by 15,435 in the final electoral roll prepared before the 2004 parliamentary election. In the electoral roll prepared after the special summary revision during 2004, there were a total of 3,42,515 women voters compared to 3,27,944 male voters.
In the latest electoral roll published on January 10, 2009 after the delimitation exercise, the number of women voters increased by more than 27,000. When compared to 3,64,167 male voters, there were 3,91,722 women voters. In the last parliamentary election, at least one Assembly segment had more number of male voters, however, the latest electoral list showed that all the 30 constituencies had more number of women voters.
In the 2004 election, the Mudaliarpet Assembly constituency had about 100 more male voters but the latest electoral list showed that women voters were around 80 more in the segment.
The two Assembly constituencies Mahe and Yanam have the maximum number of women voters.
While Mahe the biggest Assembly segment after delimitation has 3000 more women voters, Yanam has 1000 more women voters. The other constituencies that showed a huge difference in the number of male and women voters were Thirunallar, Karaikal South and Neravy T.R. Pattinam.
Officials in the Election Department told The Hindu that there were two reasons for the increase in the number of women voters. One reason was due to the increase in sex ratio, to the advantage of women. As per the 2001 population census, the number of female per 1000 male was 1001, compared to the 1991 census figure of 979 female per 1000 male. Another reason that was identified during the electoral revision was the fact that women hailing from the region settled down in their native place even after marriage, said an official.
Though women voters were on the higher side during the last two Lok Sabha polls, the percentage of votes polled by women was less compared to men. In previous elections, while percentage of male turnout was 63.41 in 1999, 74.90 in 2004, the percentage of women voters was 63.13 in 1999 and 72.29 in 2004.