Chandigarh, May 12 : Polling began at 7am amid tight security on Sunday in 10 parliamentary constituencies of Haryana for the sixth phase of Lok Sabha elections.
As many as 1,80,56,896 registered voters, including 97,16,516 male, 83,40,173 female and 207 transgender, will exercise their franchise at 19,442 polling stations across the state to decide the fate of 223 candidates including 11 women who are in the electoral fray. Maximum 29 candidates are in fray in Sonepat parliamentary constituency and minimum 16 candidates are in electoral battle in Karnal Lok Sabha seat.
Voters could be seen in queues or rushing towards polling booths even before 0700 hrs in the state. Around 67,000 Haryana police personnel and 95 companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed in the state to ensure free and fair polling. The Election Commision has deployed about 1.25 lakh employees or officers on election duty and 22, 819 Control units, 44,374 Ballot units and 24,451 VVPAT machines would be used in the Lok Sabha elections.
A tough electoral battle is seen between ruling BJP and opposition parties Congress, Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) and Jannayak Janta Party (JJP)-Aam Adami Party (AAP) alliance. The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) in alliance with Loktantra Suraksha Party of BJP rebel Raj Kumar Saini is also in the fray.
Prominent candidates who are in the fray included BJP candidates Union Minister Rao Inderjit Singh (Gurugram), Union Minister of State Krishan Pal Gurjar(Fariadabad), sitting MP Ratan Lal Kataria(Ambala) and Dharam Bir Singh(Bhiwani-Mahendergarh), Brijendra Singh, son of Union Minister Birender Singh (Hisar), Congress nominees former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda (Sonepat), his son Deepinder Singh Hooda (Rohtak), Bhavya Bishnoi, grandson of former chief minister Bhajan Lal (Hisar), former union minister Kumari Selja (Ambala) and Haryana Congress president Dr Ashok Tanwar (Sirsa), JJP leader Dushyant Chautala, great grandson of former Deputy Prime Minister Devi Lal (Hisar) and his brother Digvijay Chautala (Sonepat) and INLD candidate Arjun Chautala, grandson of former chief minister Om Prakash Chautala (Kurukshetra).
Several national and state leaders held rallies and road shows in favour of their candidates during the around month-long campaigning in the state.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP national president Amit Shah, Union ministers Nitin Gadkari and Rajnath Singh, campaigned aggressively for the saffron party while Congress party chief Rahul Gandhi and General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and former union minister and party's Haryana affairs incharge Ghulam Nabi Azad campaigned for the party candidates.
Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Adami Party (AAP) Convener Arvind Kejriwal, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati also campaigned for their alliance candidates. UNI