New Delhi: Campaigning ended yesterday for the April 30 Lok Sabha polls in seven states and two union territories where nearly 139 million voters will decide the electoral fate of over 1,200 candidates who are in the fray for 89 Lok Sabha seats.
This is the eighth round of the staggered 10-phase general election that began on April 7 and ends on May 12. The votes will be counted on May 16.
Simultaneous assembly polls are scheduled to be held for 119 seats in the Telangana region of Andhra Pradesh. Besides, by-polls are being held in Bihar (one), Gujarat (seven), Uttar Pradesh (two) and one in West Bengal.
Balloting will take place tomorrow for 17 Lok Sabha seats in Andhra Pradesh, seven in Bihar, 26 in Gujarat, one in Jammu and Kashmir, 13 in Punjab, 14 in Uttar Pradesh, 9 in West Bengal, and one each in the union territories of Dadra and Nagar Haveli as well as Daman and Diu.
Electors in Gujarat and Punjab will be voting for the Lok Sabha seats from the respective states in a single-phase poll.
The eligible voters will cast their ballot at 152,673 polling booths across the 89 parliamentary constituencies where polling will begin at 7am.
Gujarat has a maximum of 334 candidates contesting for its 26 parliamentary seats, while the union territory of Daman and Diu has the least number of candidates at a bare four.
In Uttar Pradesh, a keenly watched contest is in Rae Bareli where Congress president Sonia Gandhi is seeking her third consecutive term. She is pitted against Ajay Agarwal of the BJP, Pravesh Singh of the Bahujan Samaj Party and Archana Srivastava of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
Her Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) counterpart Rajnath Singh is contesting from Lucknow, a seat that has been represented in the past by former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
Also in contention is veteran BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi, who, having been eased out of Varanasi by prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, will face the electorate in Kanpur.
Gujarat will witness BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi fight it out against Congress candidate Madhusudan Mistri in Vadodara. Modi is also contesting from Varanasi which will vote on May 12.
BJP stalwart Lal Krishna Advani is contesting the Gandhinagar parliamentary seat.