Ahmedabad, Apr 30 UNI | 3 months ago

Single-phase polling for the general elections started today in BJP-ruled Gujarat, which has 26 Lok Sabha seats, on a peacefull note amid elaborate security arrangements.

The polling started at 0700 hrs across the state. It will continue till 1800 hrs. The state has a total of 4.06 crore voters. By-polls to seven Assembly seats are also taking place simultaneously with the general elections.

Elaborate security arrangements have been made to ensure free and fair polling.

DGP P C Thakur told UNI a total of 175 companies of para-military forces have been deployed across the state.

He said over one lakh police personnel, members of Lok Rakshak Dal, Gram Rakshak Dal and Home Guard have also been deployed. Mr Thakur said focus was being given to sensitive areas. The police was using latest technology to thwart any untoward incident during the polling. CCTVs have been installed at various polling booths. Para-military personnel have been mainly deployed across the state at 45,380 polling booths.

Out of the total 45,380 polling booths in the state, 10,725 have been identified as "critical".

Out of total voters there were 2,12,10,291 male voters, 1,93,68,001 female voters and 285 others.

There are over 2.46 crore voters in the fourth phase of which 1.13 crore are males and 1.12 crores are females.

There are 25,380 polling booths in this phase with 3554 identified as critical booths.

In this phase, number of security personnel deployed is over 1,35,000 in which 225 companies are central forces.

Special security has been made in the dacoit infested Chitrakoot-Banda districts adjoining Madhya Pradesh on the Chambal ravines. Beside security has been tightened in communally sensitive Kanpur and Lucknow districts.

UP Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Umesh Sinha said here today that the polling was underway in a peaceful note in all the 14 seats. He said that there are also reports of boycott of polls due to local issues related to development.

EC had put 14 general observers, 14 expenditure observers, along with four police observers and 8913 micro observers in this phase.

The Commission has deployed 109641 polling personnel to conduct smooth polling.

Additional Director General of Police(Law and Order) Mukul Goel, meanwhile, said here today polling is underway peacefully in all the seats and there was no report of any violence or any untoward report from anywhere.

In 2009 Lok Sabha elections, the average poll percentage in this phase was 47.99 but in 2012 assembly polls it rose to 61.56 per cent. Lucknow has the highest number of 29 candidates in the fray followed by 21 each in Unnao and Kanpur. Jalaun has the lowest 11 candidates in the fray.Of the total candidates 39 are women. Of the 233 candidates contesting the fourth phase of Lok Sabha elections in Uttar Pradesh, as many as 36 have criminal records and 73 are 'crorepatis.11 have serious crime charges against them. The BJP has the most herculean task to improve its tally from just one seat won in last elections. In the 2009 elections, Congress won the highest six seats in this phase followed by four by the BSP, three by SP and one by the BJP. BJP, BSP and Congress have given candidates in all the 14 seats but the SP has given one short as it did not give candidature against Sonia Gandhi in Rae Bareli. Aam Admi Party(AAP) has also given candidates in all the 14 seats. The seats going to poll in the fourth phase in UP are: Dhaurahra, Sitapur, Misrikh(SC), Unnao, Mohanlalganj(SC), Lucknow, Rae Bareli, Kanpur, Jalaun, Jhansi, Hamirpur, Banda, Fatehpur and Barabanki(SC).

(Posted on 30-04-2014)