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Key battles to watch when all poll-bound states see voting on April 6

EC imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 in all Bengal constituencies going to polls; Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry will have polling in single phase for all the assembly seats on April 6

Topics
Kerala Assembly elections | Tamil Nadu elections | West Bengal Assembly polls

Agencies  |  New Delhi 

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

A three-cornered battle is on the cards in 31 assembly seats that are set to go to polls on Tuesday in the third phase of Bengal elections, with the seeking to breach fortresses, and Left Front-ISF-Congress alliance hoping to make a mark in areas, where identity politics has gained ground.

More than 7.85 million voters are eligible to exercise their franchise and decide the fate of 205 candidates -- prominent among them being leader Swapan Dasgupta, minister Ashima Patra and CPI(M) leader Kanti Ganguly -- in three districts -- Howrah, Hooghly and South 24 Parganas.

Describing all 31 West Bengal assembly constituencies as 'sensitive', the Election Commission of India (ECI) imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC. The order prohibits public gatherings in the constituencies spread over parts of three districts on Tuesday.

Kerala

Meanwhile, after weeks-long stormy campaign sessions, marathon rallies and mammoth road shows, Kerala is also set to go to polls on Tuesday with 27.4 million voters exercising their franchise to decide the fate of 957 candidates including high-profile leaders and independents in 140 Assembly constituencies across the state.

The total electorate in the state includes 1,32,83,724 male voters, 1,41,62,025 female voters and 290 transgenders, according to Election Commission figures.

An array of ministers and several sitting MLAs from both the traditional coalitions- the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) and the Congress-headed United Democratic Front (UDF) are seeking another term in the April 6 polls.

As the high-octane public campaign drew to a close last night, the southern state is now witnessing silent electioneering in which candidates and party workers are busy visiting homes and institutions to seek votes at the last minute.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, health minister K K Shailaja, Devaswom Minister Kadakampally Surendran, Power Minister M M Mani and Higher Education Minister K K Jaleel are among the prominent personalities trying their electoral luck from the ruling side.

Assam

Assam is all set to witness direct and triangular contests in 40 assembly constituencies that are going to polls in the last of the three phases on Tuesday to decide the fate of 337 candidates, including senior minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, his five cabinet colleagues and state unit president Ranjeet Kumar Dass.

A direct contest between nominees of the BJP-led NDA and Congress-headed Grand Alliance is on the cards in 20 constituencies while there is a triangular fight, including friendly contests, in the remaining seats with the Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) being considered as the third force.

The newly floated AJP is contesting in 22 seats while there are 126 independents in the fray in the final phase of the election in which the BJP-led coalition is seeking to return to power for the second term in a row.

Tamil Nadu

The high octane campaign for the April 6 Tamil Nadu Assembly ended on Sunday at 7 pm, with the stage now set for the polling on April 6 which will decide whether it will a hat-trick of terms for the AIADMK or the return of DMK after a decade in opposition.

As many as 3,998 candidates, including Chief Minister K Palaniswami, his deputy O Panneerselvam, DMK President MK Stalin, AMMK founder TTV Dhinakaran, actor and Makkal Needhi Maiam founder Kamal Haasan, Naam Tamizhar Katchi leader Seeman and BJP state unit chief L Murugan are in the fray.

Leaders, including Palaniswami and Stalin hit the campaign trail on the last day, even as they have been criss-crossing the state for hectic electioneering, the former in a bid to ensure a record third term, while the latter is keen to upset his rival's chances.

Over 62.8 million eligible voters will choose 234 members of the 3,998 contesting the

Puducherry

All the players including the NDA and Congress-DMK alliances put their best efforts to woo voters in Puducherry's 30 assembly seats going for the polls on April 6.

The Union Territory is witnessing a tough battle essentially between these two alliances. The National Democratic Alliance in the Puducherry is a rare case where the BJP is not the largest constituent of the alliance. The BJP is contesting on nine seats with the alliance led by the All India NR Congress contesting on 16 seats, and the AIADMK on five seats.

The Congress, whose government in the Union Territory fell in February before completing its five-year term under the Chief Minister V Narayansamy, has also ceded its ground to its allies in Puducherry, giving 13 seats to the DMK and one each to the Communist Party of India and the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi. The party skipped fielding former Chief Minister Narayanasamy and is contesting on only 14 out of its 15 seats.

Congress has not fielded any candidate from Yanam constituency, the second seat from where AINRC chief N Rangasamy is contesting. To Narayanasamy, the party has given the responsibility of campaign and election management.

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First Published: Mon, April 05 2021. 20:49 IST