Guj Polls: Fewer Transgenders Voted This Time

| Updated: December 19, 2022 2:47 pm

Even as the overall voting percentage for the two-phased Gujarat Assembly polls remained low at 64.33 percent, the third gender especially recorded a rather dismal turnout at 31.99 percent. The transgenders, who were recognised by the Election Commission of India (ECI) as a separate gender category in 2014, have increased in count on the voter list since the 2017 Assembly polls — where they first voted as the third gender. From 702 registered transgender voters in 2017 to about 1,100 registered transgender voters in the Lok Sabha polls of 2019, currently, 1,391 transgenders have registered as voters.

However, only 445 turned up across 33 districts of Gujarat to cast their votes in the 2022 polls.

Vadodara district has the highest number of transgender voters at 226. However, only 74 came out to vote, making a voter turnout of 32.74 percent. In Ahmedabad, only 47 out of the 209 transgenders voted making a voter turnout of 22.49 percent, while 51 out of 160 transgenders voted in Surat marking 31.88 percent voter turnout.

Anand, where 53 of 128 registered transgender voters came out to cast their votes, saw a turnout of 41.41 percent. Tapi district, which has only four transgender voters saw a 75 percent voter turnout with three coming out to vote, followed by Patan at 65.38 percent turnout where 17 of the 26 transgenders voted.

In Botad too, three of the five registered transgender voters exercised their franchise, making a 60 percent voter turnout. Dahod, where 16 transgenders were registered as voters, saw zero turnout, along with Narmada and Dangs districts having two registered transgender voters, each.

The transgender community says that the lower voting percentage is a result of “incomplete registrations” of voters.

Rajkot, which had 34 registered transgender voters saw a voting percentage of 41.18 percent with 14 transgenders casting their vote on the polling day. Meanwhile, the State Election Commission had not received any complaints from transgenders about being unable to vote.

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