Tuesday 18 Jun 2024

Women voters hold key in South Goa as suspense over candidates continue

Focus on BJP’s ‘Fair Play’, and whether it could pay off; all eyes on how Congress will approach situation

Women voters hold key in South Goa as suspense over candidates continue

There seems no end to the suspense over the South Goa candidate and so are a host of unanswered questions – will the BJP zero in on a woman candidate for the South Goa seat? And, will the gamble of fielding a woman pay off? And, how would the Congress handle the emerging situation in the event the ruling party finally decides to field a woman for South Goa?

As these and a host of questions remain unanswered, one thing, however, is clear – no political player can afford to ignore the Nari Shakti in the coming Lok Sabha polls for the South Goa seat. In fact, don’t be surprised if one comes across huge queue of women at the polling stations across the constituency. Reason: Women decisively outnumber men in the constituency, having an electorate close to six lakh, around 5,95,070 electorate to be precise.

A glance at the electoral list released by the election authorities throws light on the extent of women domination in the South Goa Lok Sabha constituency. In fact, women outnumber men by around 18,575 votes.

A further glance at the list would show that of the 20 Assembly segments that make up the South Goa Lok Sabha constituency, women outnumber men in 18 of the 20 segments. So crucial will be the women power in South Goa that barring the two Assembly segments of Ponda in Ponda taluka and Vasco in Mormugao taluka, its women all the way in leading over the men folk in the remaining 18 segments.

Take note, even in the two segments of Ponda and Vasco, men outnumber women by just a few hundred votes. Take the case of Ponda segment. Men lead over women in the constituency by just 156 votes. Similarly, in Vasco, men outnumber women by around 698 votes.

Comparatively, women play a decisive role in the rest of the Assembly segments, including the eight Assembly segments of Salcete and the remaining segments in the hinterland talukas of South Goa district, including Sanguem.

A look at the electorate would suggest that men enjoy an edge or comes close to women in the number game in the urban and semi urban segments of Ponda, Vasco, Mormugao, Dabolim, besides Margao, Curchorem. Though women outnumber men in these segments barring Ponda and Vasco, the difference between the male-female voters, however, is comparatively less.

Take note, South Goa plays host to a large number of NRIs and people working in the Merchant Navy, whose names are enrolled on the electoral rolls, but may not be available in the State for voting at the time of elections, indicating that women votes will play a more dominant role than what is projected by the electoral roll.

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