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Stage set for penultimate phase of Lok Sabha polls

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

The fate of several Union ministers including Radha Mohan Singh, Harshvardhan and Maneka Gandhi, Yadav and leaders and will be decided Sunday in the sixth and penultimate phase of polls to be held in 59 constituencies in six states and

Elections will be held in 14 seats in Uttar Pradesh, 10 seats in Haryana, eights constituencies each in Bihar, and West Bengal, seven seats in and four in

Over 10.17 crore voters are eligible to exercise their franchise to choose among the 979 candidates in fray. The has set up over 1.13 lakh polling stations for smooth conduct of polls.

The elections in this phase are seen as a big test for the BJP which had won 45 of these seats in 2014, with the bagging 8, the two and the and the one seat each among others.

In Uttar Pradesh, the BJP had won 13 of the 14 constituencies in 2014, the only exception being Azamgarh, won then by SP founder

However, the BJP had to face defeat in the bypolls in Phulpur and Gorakhpur constituencies last year. While, the anti-BJP alliance would like to retain its grip over both the seats, the saffron party is looking to wrest them from the opposition.

Their importance can be gauged from the fact that Gorakhpur was represented by in from 1998 to 2017, before he became the of

Similarly, Phulpur was won for the first time by the BJP in 2014, when emerged victorious from the seat once represented by Jawaharlal Nehru, India's first prime Maurya vacated the seat after he became the deputy of the state in 2017.

In Azamgarh this time, is trying to retain his father's seat against Bhojpuri film star Yadav 'Nirahua' of the BJP.

Sultanpur too is seeing an interesting contest as the BJP has fielded for the seat won by her son in 2014.

The seats appears tricky for Maneka as BJP strategists are relying on a division of Congress and gathbandhan votes, besides possible counter-polarisation of non-Yadav and non-Jatav Dalit and OBC votes.

Polling will also be held for Bhopal, Morena, Bhind (SC), Gwalior, Guna, Sagar, Vidisha and Rajgarh seats in This will be the third phase of polling in Madhya Pradesh, with the first and second phases having been held on April 29 and May 6. The last phase will be held on May 19.

The seat will see an interesting fight between senior Congress and BJP nominee Pragya Singh Thakur.

Guna will seal the fate of AICC and Congress candidate Scindia. and BJP nominee Narendra Singh Tomar is in the fray from Morena.

In the national capital, voting will be held in all the seven seats. As many as 164 candidates, including 18 women, are in the fray.

It is expected to be three-cornered fight involving the BJP, and the Congress.

Prominent candidates in the fray include veteran Congress Sheila Dikshit, Vijender Singh, Harsh Vardhan, Atishi from and her BJP rival cricketer-turned-politician

Union ministers and are among the 223 candidates in fray in

Former Bhupinder Singh Hooda, a sitting MLA of Congress from district, is once again trying his luck to enter the lower House, this time from Sonipat. Earlier, Hooda had remained a four-time from Rohak parliamentary constituency.

Hooda's son is seeking re-election for fourth term from as Congress nominee.

Among other candidates, Union minister Birender Singh's son (BJP) and former Bhajan Lal's grandson (Congress), both political greenhorns, are contesting from the Hisar seat, whre they face sitting and of newly floated JJP Dushyant Chautala, grandson of former chief minister, O P Chautala.

minister and state Congress chief are fighting from Ambala and Sirsa, respectively, for the party.

The ruling Trinamool Congress, the BJP, the Congress and the Left Front constituents - the CPI(M), the CPI and the AIFB - are the main contenders in In this phase, polling will be held in Jangal Mahal - the forested region of Bankura, West Midnapore, Jhargram and Purulia districts, which used to be a Maoist hotbed, during the erstwhile

In Jharkhand, Chandraprakash Choudhary, former and ex-Madhu Koda's wife are among the 67 candidates whose fate will be sealed in the third phase of polls in the state.

Polling will be held in Dhanbad, Giridih, and (ST) seats, all won by the BJP in 2014.

Altogether, 66,85,401 voters, including 31,79,720 women and 116 of the third gender, are eligible to exercise their franchise.

Four sitting MPs, including Radha Mohan Singh, are among the 127 candidates contesting in

Amid tight security, polling will be held in eight Lok Sabha seats - Sheohar, Valmiki Nagar, Pashchimi Champaran, Purvi Champaran, Siwan, Gopalganj, Maharajganj and Vaishali.

Among the 127 candidates, 16 are women - eight in Vaishali, four in Siwan and one each in Sheohar, Maharajganj, and

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

First Published: Sat, May 11 2019. 18:45 IST