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Voting begins for penultimate phase Lok Sabha polls

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Polling began Sunday morning for 59 seats in the sixth and penultimate phase of polls with Union ministers Radha Mohan Singh, and Maneka Gandhi, Yadav and leaders and among several prominent faces in the fray.

Elections are being 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 decide the fate of 979 candidates. The has set up over 1.13 lakh polling stations for smooth conduct of the 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.

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

The seat in is witnessing an interesting contest between senior Congress and BJP nominee Pragya Singh Thakur.

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

In Uttar Pradesh, the BJP is up against the SP-BSP-RLD coalition and the Congress. 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 Maurya vacated the seat after he became the deputy minister 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 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 is being 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

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

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

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

The final phase of polls will be held for 59 seats on May 19. Results will be declared on May 23.

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

First Published: Sun, May 12 2019. 07:15 IST