Where older women beat men voters

Voters waits for casting their vote at the polling station Basirhut during Basirhut South Assembly bypolls in West Bengal on Sept 13, 2014. (Photo: IANS)

By Jaideep Sarin 

As they grow older, women voters in Haryana get the better of men – numerically speaking.

In the 70-years plus age group, it is the women who outnumber men among eligible voters in the state.
That is quite an achievement given the fact that Haryana has the worst sex ratio (number of women per 1,000 men) in the country. Haryana’s sex ratio, as per the Census 2011, is a dismal 879 females per 1,000 males.

Haryana’s Chief Electoral Officer Shrikant Walgad said women voters in the 70-plus age group were more in number than male voters.

“There are 601,971 voters (586,427 in the 2009 assembly polls) in the age group of 70-79 years, out of which 293,191 are males and 308,780 females. There are 339,477 voters (288,333 in 2009) in the age group of 80 years and above out of which 146,365 are males and 193,112 are females,” Walgad said.

In the 80-plus category, the women voters are greater by 46,747 while in the 70-79 years category there are 15,589 more women voters than men.

“This clearly shows that despite the adverse sex ratio in Haryana, women, even in older age, want to stand up and be counted as voters,” Sheetal Dahiya, a school teacher whose 75-year-old mother is a voter, told IANS.

In the 60-69 years age group too, women voters are quite close in number to men voters. There are 1,307,745 voters, including 659,638 males and 648,107 women – a difference of only 11,531.

Compared to the older age group, it is the younger age group of 18 and 19 years where there is a stark difference in number of male and female voters.

“There are 529,476 voters in the age group of 18-19 years, out of which 368,987 are males and 160,489 females,” Walgad said.

The difference of number of male and female voters in this category alone is over 208,000 voters.

In the 20-29 age group, the difference in numbers of men and women voters increases to nearly 550,000 voters in favour of men. In the 30-39 age group, men outnumber women by over 292,000. In the 40-49 age group, men voters are 191,000 more than female voters.

As the state’s 90 assembly seats go to the polls Oct 15, a total of 16,216,555 people will be eligible to vote. These include 8,737,116 males and 7,479,439 females. In 2009, the total was 13,029,141.

Walgad said that 3,187,414 more voters will exercise their franchise this time as compared to the 2009 assembly polls.

“The highest increase has been in the 20-29 age group. This group has 3,940,108 voters, compared to 2,899,388 in 2009,” Walgad said.