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LS Polls: UP sleuths seize 60-kg explosives, bust 922 illegal arms units

Illicit liquor worth Rs 36 crore & drugs valued at Rs 41 crore in street market also seized

Photo: Unsplash/ripster8

Representative Picture | Photo: Unsplash/ripster8

Virendra Singh Rawat Lucknow

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In the run up to the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, various government agencies including police have seized large quantities of explosives, arms and ammunition in Uttar Pradesh.

According to UP’s Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Navdeep Rinwa, the haul included more than 60-kg of explosives and 200 bombs.

State police, excise, income tax, narcotics and other departments are carrying out checks and raids across the state to ensure smooth elections.

And during these operations, police have seized more than 3,500 illegal arms and 3,860 cartridges, while 922 illicit arms units were busted.

Nearly 475 licensed arms of people with criminal antecedents have been confiscated by the police, while 3,893 arms seized after canceling their licenses. Restraint orders have also been issued against over 1.6 million people, Rinwa said,

And not just this, agencies have also seized nearly Rs 19 crore unaccounted cash, illicit liquor worth Rs 36 crore, drugs valued Rs 41 crore in street market and precious metals estimated at Rs 18 crore.

Posters, graffiti, wall writings, banners etc. had either been removed or covered since the model code of conduct came into effect.

UP, which accounts for the maximum 80 seats, would witness polling in 7 phases viz. April 19, 26, May 7, 13, 20, 25 and June 1, roughly progressing from the Western region towards the Eastern UP districts.

Earlier, ECI said it was striving to encourage voters in UP, which recorded a tepid turnout of nearly 59 per cent in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

As part of its ‘Turnout Implementation Plan’ (TIP), the polls regulator shortlisted 10 UP Lok Sabha constituencies where the voter turnout was below the state’s polling percentage.

These parliamentary constituencies comprise Phulpur, Kanpur, Allahabad, Shravasti, Gonda, Domariyaganj, Pratapgarh, Bhadohi, Amethi and Sant Kabir Nagar.

There are approximately 152.9 million voters in Uttar Pradesh (January 23 data), including 81.4 million male voters, 71.5 million female voters etc. The number of first-time voters (18-19 age group) is more than 2 million.

As per ECI, there are 1,62,012 polling stations in UP, of which 38,959 and 123,053 are in urban and rural areas respectively.

In 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP and its ally Apna Dal (Sonelal) won 64 Lok Sabha seats in UP, while the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) won 10, the Samajwadi Party (SP) 5 and Congress scooped one.  

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First Published: Apr 03 2024 | 8:22 PM IST

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