Phase four of the Lok Sabha election and the state elections in Andhra and Odisha both commence voting

May 13, New Delhi In the fourth round of the elections, which covers 96 Lok Sabha seats in 10 states and a union territory, from Jammu and Kashmir to Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra to West Bengal, voting got underway at 7 a.m. on Monday.

Elections for the parliamentary seats are being conducted concurrently with those for the assemblies of Odisha (28 out of 147 seats) and Andhra Pradesh (175 seats).

Elections are now underway in Andhra Pradesh (all 25 seats), Telangana (all 17 seats), Odisha (4), Jharkhand (4), Uttar Pradesh (13 seats), Bihar (5), West Bengal (8), Maharashtra (11), Madhya Pradesh (8), and Jammu and Kashmir (1).

17.7 crore voters (8.97 crore men and 8.73 crore women) will swarm 1.92 lakh voting places to determine the fate of 1,717 contenders running for office. Voting will continue till 6 p.m., although it will close at 4 p.m. in three Andhra Pradesh Assembly seats afflicted by left-wing extremism and at 5 p.m. in three more.

Union Ministers Arjun Munda (Khunti-ST, Jharkhand), Nityanand Rai (Ujiarpur, Bihar), and Ajay Mishra Teni (Kheri, Uttar Pradesh) are prominent candidates in this phase. Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury of the Congress is running against former cricket player Yusuf Pathan (Trinamool Congress) in Baharampur, West Bengal; actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Singh of the Trinamool in Asansol, West Bengal; and Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav is running against incumbent BJP MP Subrat Pathak in Kannauj, Uttar Pradesh.

Other important battlegrounds are Hyderabad, where the BJP’s Madhavi Latha and sitting MP Asaduddin Owaisi of the AIMIM are locked in a major showdown; Krishnanagar, West Bengal; Beed, Mahashtra; Pankaja Munde, the BJP’s nominee who was fielded in lieu of sitting MP and younger sister Pritam Munde, faces NCP-SP’s Bajrang Sonawane; and Andhra Pradesh state Congress chief Y.S. Sharmila is challenging cousin and sitting MP Avinash Reddy in Kadapa.

An IMD prediction indicates that hot weather conditions for polling in this phase are not a major issue. To make voting easy for everyone, including the elderly and those with disabilities, poll officials have guaranteed basic amenities like drinking water, wheelchairs, ramps, restrooms, and shelters to provide shade from the heat.

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