Phase 3 of UP polling begins today, Punjab goes to votetext_fields
The state of Uttar Pradesh has moved into the crucial third phase of the assembly elections on Sunday, with 59 important constituencies going to the polls. This phase could determine the future political landscape of the state. Voting began at 7 AM and continue until 6 PM.
In addition to the third phase in UP, Punjab has opened up all its constituencies for voting, with 117 seats witnessing a fierce battle between members of the ruling Congress party, the Aam Admi Party and Shiromani Akali Dal who has allied with the BJP in some areas. Such a multi-pronged conflict is a first in Punjab's history.
Voting in Punjab began at 8 AM.
Polling in UP will be spread across 16 crucial districts – Hathras, Firozabad, Etah, Kasganj, Mainpuri, Farrukhabad, Kannauj, Etawah, Auraiya, Kanpur Dehat, Kanpur Nagar, Jalaun, Jhansi, Lalitpur, Hamirpur and Mahoba. Notably, Samajwadi Party supremo and former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav will battle it out from the Karhal seat against BJP candidate and Union minister SP Singh Baghel.
A total of 627 candidates are in the fray in the third phase, while over 20 million people are eligible to vote. The counting of votes will be held on March 10.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged voters to exercise their right and vote in large numbers.
"The Punjab elections and the third phase of the UP elections are being held today. I call upon all those voting today to do so in large numbers, particularly the youth as well as first time voters," PM Modi tweeted.
A case was registered on Saturday against Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi and Congress candidate and singer Shubhdeep Singh Sidhu aka Sidhu Moosewala for violation of the model code of conduct, while Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal faced similar charges ahead of Sunday's voting in the state.
Channi and Moosewala were campaigning in Mansa after 6 PM on Friday, the time limit set for all canvassing to stop, police said.
The FIR against AAP head Kejriwal was based on a complaint made on February 18 by SAD vice president Arshdeep Singh Kler, who alleged that he violated the model code by making "false and frivolous allegations" against political parties, the Times of India reported.