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Turnout rises in UP despite heat

Lucknow, May 7, 2014, IANS 17:03 IST
Serpentine queues were witnessed at many polling booths, where a large number of women and youngsters cast their votes. PTI photo

Braving the heat, hundreds of thousands of people came out to vote in the 15 parliamentary constituencies in Uttar Pradesh which went to the polls Wednesday in the penultimate phase of the Lok Sabha elections.

More than 45 percent polling was recorded till 3 p.m. with the highest polling in Ambedkarnagar, where 47.6 percent of the electorate cast their votes.

In the high profile Amethi constituency, where sitting MP and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi faces Kumar Vishwas of the Aam Aadmi Party and Smriti Irani of the Bharatiya Janata Party, 47 percent polling was recorded so far. This was higher than the 46 percent turnout in 2009.

The voting percentage in Qaiserganj was 46 percent, 44 percent in Allahabad and 42.2 percent in Bhadohi.

In Gonda, from where union Steel Minister Beni Prasad is contesting, 46 percent polling was logged till 3 p.m, while in Faizabad, where BJP's Lallu Singh is facing incumbent MP and Congress state unit president Nirmal Khatri, the voting percentage was 47 percent in this time period.

Sultanpur, from where BJP general secretary Varun Gandhi is contesting, saw 41 percent turnout. The seat was once represented by his father late Sanjay Gandhi.

Election officials said that voting was peaceful and that they were looking at a high voter turnout, almost 15 percent more than that in 2009.

During the mock polling at the beginning of the day, 50 EVMs developed technical snags and the matter was reported to the poll panel. After the beginning of actual polling, 70 EVMs developed snags and were immediately replaced, chief electoral officer (CEO) Umesh Sinha said.

Around 2.62 crore voters are eligible to vote to elect their representatives from among 243 candidates for the 15 seats, two of them reserved, stretching across the central parts of the state.

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