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UP: 36.44 pc voter turnout till 1300 hrs; Minor clash in Chandauli

UP: 36.44 pc voter turnout till 1300 hrs; Minor clash in Chandauli

Lucknow, May 19 (UNI) Around 36.44 per cent of the total 2.37 crore voters exercised their franchise till 1300 hrs on Sunday in the seventh and last phase of polling in Uttar Pradesh.

A report from Chandauli Lok Sabha constituency said that a clash broke out between BJP and SP workers near a polling booth in Sikitiya area. BJP MLA Sadhna Singh was present when the violence broke out with SP leaders alleging rigging by the BJP. Police intervened to control the issue.

In another incident in the same Chandauli constituency, some leaders of a political party allegedly distributed Rs 500 each to the members of the Dalit community at Tarajivanpur village under Alinagar police station and prevented them from voting and with some anti-social elements putting black ink on their finger tips. The EC has sought a report from the authorities over the incident.

In Sakaldiha Assembly segment of Ghazipur Lok Sabha seat, a fire broke out at booth number 237 but was brought under control by the local villagers within 30 minutes disrupting the polling briefly.

According to Election Commission sources here, the polling was peaceful though several EVMs and VVPATs were replaced due to snags.

The sources said the polling percentage was 10.06 per cent at 0900 hrs which rose to 22.62 per cent at 1100 hrs and 36.44 per cent at 1300 hrs.

The polling percentage in 13 Lok Sabha constituencies at 1300 hrs were: 38 pc in Maharajganj , 38.16 pc Gorakhpur, 37 pc in Kushinagar, 36.34 pc in Deoria, 36.86 pc in Basgaon, 36.80 pc in Ghosi, 34.84 pc in Salempur, 34.92 pc in Ballia, 37.65 pc in Ghazipur, 34.20 pc in Chandauli, 36.80 pc in Varanasi, 35.96 pc in Mirzapur and 35.96 pc in Robertsganj.

A report from Varanasi, from where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the candidate, said that polling was peaceful with 36.80 per cent polling till 1300 hrs. In 2014, the total polling percentage in Varnasi was 58.25 per cent.

In Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Mirzapur and Ghazipur, voters queued up at polling booths one hour before it commenced. But the voting slowed down as the heat wave conditions started after 1200 hrs. Congress candidate Ajai Rai and SP nominee Shalini Yadav cast their votes after worshiping in different temples in the city. Senior BJP leader Dr Murli Manohar Joshi too voted in Varanasi.

The PM, who held a roadshow in the city on April 25 before filing his nominations the next day and totally missed campaigning in Varanasi except for releasing a video appealing people to support him, is in Kedarnath and Badrinath.

UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath exercised his franchise at 0700 hrs at a polling booth in Gorakhpur after paying obeisance at Gorakshnath temple. In Gorakhpur, the polling percentage was 11.07.

Union ministers Manoj Sinha voted at Ghazipur, while Anupriya Patel in Mirzapur.

A presiding officer, in charge of booth number 213 in Gorakhpur Lok Sabha seat, died following a massive heart attack on Sunday before the start of the polling.

The official said the officer, an inspector in the sugarcane department, Vinod Srivastava, complained of chest pain and was rushed to the hospital. But he died on early Sunday morning.

The deceased presiding officer was in-charge of Booth number 213 at Kopawan under Basgaon police station area.

The polling, however, was not disrupted at the booth as alternative arrangements were made by the authorities.

Meanwhile, 3 villages-- two in Gorakhpur and one in Mau district-- boycotted the polls over development issues. In Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency too, villagers of Madhopur under Harau block have boycotted the polls.

Villagers of Nayarar and Chakadal villages under Campairganj Assembly segment in Gorakhpur Lok Sabha seat boycotted the polls, while in Mau villagers of Sanagpar village under Ghosi Lok Sabha seat boycotted the polls in protest against improper roads despite repeated requests.

UNI MB SB 1437

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