Nearly 334,000 first-time voters are likely to play a key role in deciding the fate of candidates contesting from the three assembly seats — Noida, Dadri and Jewar — in Gautam Budh Nagar in the 2022 Uttar Pradesh elections, said officials on Friday.

As Gautam Budh Nagar comes into the Phase I schedule, out of total seven phases planned in Uttar Pradesh by the Election Commission of India (ECI), the polling will take place on February 10 this year.

The nomination filing in the district started on Friday, with the administration putting adequate force and arrangement in place for a peaceful process at the Surajpur district magistrate office, where the nomination papers will be submitted and reviewed. However, none of the candidates filed nomination papers on Day One.

There are a total of 2,525,000 voters in the list this time, against the 1,624,000 voters in the 2019 general elections, according to officials.

“According to the revised electoral roll, the total number of voters has gone up as compared to the previous electoral roll,” said Suhas LY, district election officer of Gautam Budh Nagar.

Since Noida and Greater Noida (Dadri seat) are home to the migrant population who come in these cities for employment, much more compared to Jewar, which is a rural belt so far, as the urbanisation there will take some time, said administration officials. As a result, people keep moving to and from these two cities in large numbers, thereby impacting the electoral roll in every election.

“The number of voters has gone up in Noida and Dadri seats because a large number of voters have shifted here into their homes or rented accommodations. However, since Jewar is a rural area, only 7% first-time voters have been added to the list,” said an administration official, requesting anonymity.

There are 690,000 voters in Noida — a 32% increase from 524,000 voters in the previous list of 2019 general elections, and there are 587,000 voters in Dadri — nearly 33% from 441,000 voters in the previous list.

“The first-time voters will play a key role in deciding the fate of the candidates, because they will vote for a party or candidate who will reach out to them strongly with a plan,” said Bhanu Pratap Jha, political science assistant professor at Delhi University.

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