Maha phase-II poll: 358 candidates in fray for 19 seats

Maha phase-II poll: 358 candidates in fray for 19 seats

Maha phase-II poll: 358 candidates in fray for 19 seats

Nearly 3.25 crore voters are expected to decide the fate of 358 candidates, including Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, former Chief Minister Ashok Chavan and senior BJP leader Gopinath Munde, in 19 constituencies during the second phase of Lok Sabha election in Maharashtra on April 17.

Ten constituencies of Vidarbha have already voted in the first phase on April 10.In the second phase, there are 358 candidates in fray, including 24 women and 201 independents.

There are 3,24,27,558 voters, which include 1,69,54,391 men and 1,53,77,605 women. There are 306 voters in the others category and 95,256 in the service category.

The constituencies that will go to polls are –Hingoli, Nanded, Beed, Parbhani, Osmanabad and Latur in Marathwada, Pune, Baramati, Shirur, Maval, Solapur, Madha, Sangli, Satara, Kolhapur, Hathkanangale in Western Maharashtra, Shirdi, Ahmednagar in North Maharashtra and Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg in Konkan.

The generation next of Maharashtra politics – Supriya Sule (Baramati) and Nilesh Rane (Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg) - are seeking a second term.

Indian Youth Congress chief Rajiv Satav, who is currently a legislator, is making a debut in electoral politics from Hingoli.

Vishwajit Kadam, who is the state Youth Congress chief and son of Congress veteran Patangrao Kadam, is also making his debut from Pune.

There are 11 constituencies with more than 16 candidates, while at one seat there are more than 32 candidates. Beed constituency has maximum 39 candidates, while Baramati has the lowest nine.

The largest constituency electorate wise is Maval with 19,46,127 voters. The smallest constituency electorate wise is Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg (13,63,957). 

Union Home minister Shinde is contesting from Solapur. Ashok Chavan, who had to quit three years ago over the alleged involvement in the Adarsh Housing Scam, is the Congress candidate from his home turf of Nanded, while BJP leader Gopinath Munde is seeking a second term as MP from Beed. Union minister of state Pratik Patil Pratik Patil (Cong) is seeking a second term from Sangli.

BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, state Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray have campaigned for their respective party candidates, while Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi will campaign from tomorrow.

BSP has fielded candidates in all the 19 seats, followed by NCP which is contesting 10, Congress 9, Shiv Sena 8, BJP 7, MNS 2, CPI and CPM 1 each.

There are 36,879 polling stations, where 44,254 EVMs will be used for voting.

Besides, nearly 2,76,592 polling personnel will be deployed during the voting process.