New Delhi, May 12: An estimated 62 + per cent turnout of the 11 crore electorate was recorded on Sunday at 59 seats spread across seven states in the sixth and penultimate phase of Lok Sabha elections.
President Ram Nath Kovind and several well-known politicians, including External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Indian National Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal were among those who took part in democracy's finest hour which passed off by and large peacefully, although sporadic violence was reported from Bengal and Jharkhand.
Former Chief Minister and Congress candidate from North East parliamentary seat Sheila Dikshit, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and BJP nominee from East Delhi Gautam Gambhir were among the early voters.
Indian cricket skipper Virat Kohli voted at a polling booth in Gurugram.
Indian Air Force chief Air Marshal BS Dhanoa exercised his franchise at a booth in Nirman Bhawan. Former President Pranab Mukherjee exercised his franchise at a polling booth in NP Primary School, K Kamraj Lane. Senior Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Prakash Karat exercised his franchise at a polling booth in Sanchar Bhawan.NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora also voted.
Bachan Singh, 111, the oldest voter in Delhi NCR, exercised his franchise at a polling booth at Sant Garh booth at Tilak Vihar, taken inside on a wheelchair. His youngest son, Jasbir Singh ,63, also comes under the category of senior citizens. Among the women, the oldest was 110-year-old Ram Pyari Shankhwar, residing in Kondli area of East Delhi.
Voting for seven Lok Sabha constituencies of Delhi which started on a slow note, picked up later during the day. ending with an more than 62 pc + turnout. An estimated 55 per cent turnout of the 1.1 crore electorate was recorded till 6pm. Chandni Chowk recorded 55.74 per cent voter turnout, North East Delhi ( 57.71 pc), East Delhi ( 57.01 %), New Delhi ( 53.72 per cent), North West Delhi (SC)--54.60 pc, West Delhi ( 55.45 %) and South Delhi ( 53.52 per cent).
Hindi heartland An approximate 54.12 per cent of the 2.57 crore voters exercised their franchise in 14 Lok Sabha seats of Poorvanchal region in Uttar Pradesh in the sixth phase on Sunday, which passed off peacefully. The polling sealed the fate of 177 candidates, including 13 women.Union Minister Maneka Gandhi (Sultanpur), Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav (Azamgarh) and UP cabinet minister Rita Bahuguna Joshi (Allahabad), among others, were in the fray in this phase.
Bhojpuri actor Dinesh Lal Yadav 'Nirhua' is the BJP candidate against Akhilesh Yadav from Azamgarh, while Congress has fielded its old war horse Dr Sanjay Singh from Sultanpur against Union Minister Maneka Gandhi.
An estimated 59.38 per cent of 1.38 crore electorate sealed the fate of 127 candidates including Union minister Radha Mohan Singh in eight seats where polling passed off largely peacefully amid foolproof security.Polling was held in West Champaran, East Champaran, Sheohar, Gopalganj, Siwan,Valmikinagar, Siwan and Vaishali constituencies in the penultimate phase of an election.
Violence marred the sixth and penultimate phase of polling in Bengal with Ghatal Lok Sabha constituency in West Medinipur virtually turning into a battlefield, even as an estimated 80 per cent of 1,33,69,749 electorate exercised their franchise to decide the fate of 83 candidates in Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Jhargram, Medinipur, Purulia, Bankura and Bishnupur Lok Sabha constituencies.
Election Commission sources said 82.99 % turnout was recorded in Tamluk Lok Sabha constituency, 80.06 pc in Kanthi, 80.35 per cent in Ghatal, 81.68 %in Jhargram, 78.17 pc in Medinipur, 78.64 per cent in Purulia, 75.68% in Bankura and 81.90% in Bishnupur.
Voting also took place for Giridih, Dhanbad, Jamshedpur and Singhbhum (ST) seats in Jharkhand. A 65+ per cent out of an eligible 66.85 lakh voters turned out to lock the future of 67 candidates in the fray.
The EC said that 65.17 per cent voter turnout has been recorded on these seats however this figure is expected to go up by few notches as last minute data from many centers was still being collated. Constituency wise Giridih witnessed a voter turnout of 65.93 per cent, Dhanbad 61.90 pc, Jamshedpur 66.44% and Singhbhum 67.79 %.
In 2014, Giridih had witnessed a voter turn out of 64.25 per cent, Dhanbad 60.53 pc, Jamshedpur 66.33 % and Singhbhum 69 %.
In Keshpur,Bharati Ghosh, BJP candidate, former IPS officer and once a trusted lieutenant of Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, was gheraoed by villagers when she went to a booth.A BJP worker Ramen Singh (46) was allegedly attacked by TMC workers at Jhargram's Beliabera village in Gopiballavpur. Singh was taken to a local hospital where he was declared brought dead.
A BJP worker was found dead in tribal-dominated Jhargram. The party blamed the state's ruling Trinamool Congress for the worker's death. A polling official identified as Shivendra Kishore (34) was critically injured when a bullet misfired from the rifle of a Home Guard Saryug Das hit him at polling booth number 275 under Sheohar assembly segment in Sheohar Lok Sabha constituency of Bihar. The mishap took place when Home Guard was adjusting the butt of his rifle.
Mr Kishore after his preliminary treatment at Sheohar Sadar Hospital was rushed to Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital in Muzaffarpur where he died during treatment.
An aged person died after casting his vote at polling booth number 260 under Motihari assembly segment in East Champaran Lok Sabha constituency today.District magistrate Raman Kumar said that Vishwanath Sah (55) breathed his last after casting his vote at the booth. He said, Mr Sah suffered cardiac arrest as soon as he stepped out from the polling booth leading to his death. The deceased was a native of Gajpura village under Piprakothi police station area in East Champaran district.
In an incident of pre-poll violence, two people were injured when supporters of Rashtriya Janata Dal MLA and district councillor opened fire on each other at Satasi village under Taraiya assembly segment in Maharajganj Lok Sabha constituency of Bihar late last night.
Police said here that arguments between RJD MLA Mundrika Rai and district councillor Priyanka Singh`s brother-in-law Pramod Kumar Singh over a political discussion reached flash point provoking their supporters to open fire on each other. Sources said two people were injured in the shoot-out. The injured were admitted to Taraiya referral hospital.
Police said Mr Rai was held captive for some time by local people who were enraged over the incident.Repoll to 168 polling stations of 1679 in West Tripura parliamentary constituency was peaceful and recorded 72.32 per cent voter turnout.Elsewhere, Aam Aadmi Party candidate for the South Delhi Lok Sabha seat Raghav Chadha alleged that bogus voting had taken place at a booth in a school in Tughlakabad area. He accused his Bharatiya Janata Party rival Ramesh Bidhuri for using these tactics.
Mr Chadha claimed that AAP volunteers identified some people and caught one of them red handed who voted more than once after removing the ink from his finger. AAP's Malviya Nagar MLA Somnath Bharti, in a series of tweets, alleged that some of the EVMs in his area malfunctioned. (UNI)