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Elections 2019: About 16 crore people to cast their votes on April 18

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 17, 2019

A man takes a nap on the busy pavement as the election officials gear up for the 2019 Lok sabha polls in Bengaluru on Wednesday   -  GRN Somashekar

In 97 Lok Sabha constituencies across 12 States and one Union Territory, voters will make their choice on Thursday in the second phase of Lok Sabha elections. About 15.79 crore voters will select among 1,629 candidates in the fray.

The Election Commission (EC) has set up more than 1.81 lakh polling booths. Police forces belonging to both the Centre and the States have been deployed.

Tough fight in UP

In politically-crucial Uttar Pradesh, some key constituencies such as Nagina, Amroha, Bulandshahr, Aligarh, Hathras, Mathura, Agra and Fatehpur Sikri are going to polls. In western UP, the BJP is facing a tough fight from the SP-BSP alliance. The Congress is also trying to prove its strength in the Fatehpur Sikri constituency.

Also read: 11 Lok Sabha seats, SP and BSP never won in UP

In 2014, the BJP bagged all the seats in the region. Sugarcane arrears and other problems of farmers are the leading themes of the campaign for these seats this time.

In Bihar, the Kishanganj, Katihar, Purnia, Bhagalpur and Banka constituencies will elect their MPs on Thursday.

The RJD-led alliance is trying to break the social combinations created by the BJP-JDU-LJP alliance by bringing together Yadavs, Muslims and some sections of Dalits and OBCs.

The BJP and the LJP had won a majority of the seats in 2014 without the support of the JD(U). With the JD(U)’s support this time, the alliance is hoping to retain its numbers in the State.

Voting for 38 out of the 39 seats in Tamil Nadu will be conducted. The AIADMK-BJP-PMK alliance is in a direct fight with the DMK-Congress-Left alliance there.

Money power in TN

The EC has been trying to curb the rampant use of money power in the State and even rescinded the election in Vellore constituency.

West Bengal’s Jalpaiguri, Darjeeling and Raiganj constituencies are covered in the second phase. For this phase, the EC has deployed 194 companies of Central forces to secure more than 5,300 booths.

Voters will also be exercising their franchise in 14 constituencies in Karnataka, 10 in Maharashtra, five each in Assam and Odisha, three in Chhattisgarh, and two in Jammu and Kashmir.


For the latest on elections, click: Elections 2019

Published on April 17, 2019

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