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Polling in seven Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra in first phase

Press Trust of India  |  Nagpur 

All arrangements have been made for the first phase of polling Thursday in seven seats in Maharashtra, election officials said Wednesday.

Union ministers and are among those in fray in these seats in Vidarbha region, which will see a direct fight between the BJP-alliance and the Congress-NCP-led combine.

Polling will begin at 7 AM amid tight security and end at 6 PM, said officials Wednesday.

Security has been beefed up after an IED blast Wednesday in the Naxal-affected district, where polling will be held Thursday.

A CRPF jawan, who was escorting a polling party, was injured in the blast, police said.

(Nagpur) and his Cabinet colleague (Chandrapur) -- both from the BJP -- are among prominent candidates in the fray in the first phase that covers seven out of the 10 seats in the Vidarbha region in Eastern

The constituencies going to the polls Thursday are Nagpur, Ramtek (SC), Wardha, Bhandara-Gondiya, Yavatmal- Washim, Gadchiroli-Chimur (ST) and Chandrapur.

The remaining three parliamentary seats in the region - Akola, Buldhana and Amravati - will vote in the second phase on April 18.

Maharashtra, which has 48 seats, will vote in four phases.

The BJP-Sena combine had won all the 10 Lok Sabha seats in Vidarbha in 2014.

A total of 116 candidates are in the fray in these seven seats, which were once a bastion.

As many as 1,33,00,978 voters are eligible to exercise their franchise in the seven Lok Sabha seats, the officials said.

In Nagpur, Gadkari, the sitting BJP MP, is pitted against candidate Nana Patole, while in Chandrapur, Ahir's main rival is of the

In Ramtek, sitting MP is facing former bureaucrat Kishore Gajbhiye of the Congress.

Yavatmal is witnessing a fight between MP and Congress Manikrao Thakre, while in Wardha, sitting is up against Charulata Tokas of the Congress.

In Bhandara-Gondiya, of the NCP is taking on BJP's

In Gadchiroli-Chimur, sitting is locking horns with Congress candidate

A total of 2,037 polling centres have been set up in the Lok Sabha Sabha constituency which has 21,26,574 voters, including 10,45,937 women and 66 of third gender.

Addressing a press conference here Tuesday, B K Upadhyay said tight security arrangements have been made in the city to ensure free and fair voting.

A total of 5,000 police personnel have been deployed for election duty, he said.

These include personnel from central paramilitary forces, the State Reserve Police Force, the police and Home Guards, the said.

Quick Response Teams have been put on highalert to respond immediately to any situation, the said.

district said the local administration is fully prepared for the polls.

Mock polling will be conducted at 6.15 AM in the presence of representatives of the candidates in the fray before actual voting begins, the officials said.

Gadkari, along with his family members, is expected to cast his vote at a polling booth in the Mahal area at around 9.30 AM.

Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) is expected to exercise his franchise at the polling booth at Bhauji Daftari School, Mahal, at around 7 AM.

Minister is also expected to cast his vote in the early hours of polling in Nagpur.

Narendra Modi, and Congress were among star campaigners who addressed rallies in Vidarbha.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, April 10 2019. 20:25 IST