Phase-IV Poll: SP Candidate’s Son Shot at in Mahoba
Huge turnout reported from districts in Bundelkhand region; balloting brisk in Rae Bareli, not much enthusiasm in Allahabad ‘Voting percentage was 61 till 5 pm. We hope it will go up to 63’; Polling slow in first half of day
New Delhi: The fourth phase of assembly elections in UP was by and large peaceful — with one case of firing reported in Mahoba — and saw 61% polling till 5 pm, higher than in 2012. Deputy election commissioner Vijay Dev said polling percentage is expected to go up to 63. “The voting percentage was 61 till 5 pm. We hope it will go up to 63,” he said.
The 53 seats spread over 12 districts that went to the polls on Thursday had seen 59.9% polling in the 2012 assembly polls while it was 57.1% in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls. Over 1.84 crore voters were eligible to cast their votes in the fourth phase. With Thursday’s round, polling in 262 of the 403 constituencies spread across western and c e n t r a l UP a s we l l a s Bundelkhand region has been completed. Polling was slow during the first half of the day but picked up later, election commission officials said. A total of 680 candidates were in the fray, including 61 women. Huge polling was reported from districts in Bundelkhand region — Mahoba, Jhansi, Chitrakoot, Hamirpur, Banda, Jalaun and Lalitpur — where people stood in serpentine queues to vote. But residents of some villages boycotted the polls to protest lack of development and basic amenities. Balloting in Rae Bareli, the Lok Sabha constituency of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, was brisk through the day while Allahabad did not see much enthusiasm among voters. Prominent among those who voted in the fourth phase were Bengal Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi, Union minister Niranjan Jyoti, BJP state chief KP Maurya, Congress’ RajyaSabhamemberPramodTiwari and his daughter Aradhna Mishra, who is the party candidate from Rampur Khas in Pratapgarh district.
Polling was by and large peaceful except for skirmishes in Pratapgarh between BJP and BSP activists and in Mahoba,betweenSPandBSPworkers. SP candidate SG Sahu’s son was shot and seriously injured at Mahoba.
The electronic voting machines developedsnagsinatleastadozenplaces, disrupting the election process. SPhadwonthemaximumnumberof seats in these parts in the 2012 elections, followed by BSP. Ph-I (73 seats) Ph-II (67 seats) Ph-III (69 seats)# Ph-IV (53 seats)# 2012* 2012 (403 seats) 2014 (LS polls)* 2014 (80 LS seats)