Campaign ends for last phase of Lok Sabha polls: Polling on June 1 in Uttar Pradesh

This phase will witness the VVIP Varanasi seat where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is contesting for the third time.


Along with PM Modi (right), fate of three Unions ministers — Anupriya Patel (Mirzapur), Dr Mahendra Nath Pandey (Chandauli) and Pankaj Choudhury (Maharajganj) — will be decided in this phase among the 144 candidates in the fray. PHOTO: THE STATESMAN

May 31, 2024

LUCKNOW – Campaigning for the seventh and last phase of Lok Sabha polls in Uttar Pradesh ended this evening in 13 constituencies in Purvanchal of Uttar Pradesh.

This phase will witness the VVIP Varanasi seat where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is contesting for the third time.

Along with the Prime Minister, fate of three Unions ministers — Anupriya Patel ( Mirzapur), Dr Mahendra Nath Pandey ( Chandauli) and Pankaj Choudhury ( Maharajganj) — will be decided in this phase among the 144 candidates in the fray.

Besides, Chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s political acumen would be tested on his home turf Gorakhpur, which he won five times. Bhojpuri actor Ravi Kishan Shukla is trying his luck for the second time from the constituency.

All eyes will also be on the performance of UP Congress president Ajay Rai, who is pitted against the PM in Varanasi. Ghazipur seat is also important where it will be seen which way it will swing in the absence of mafia-turned politician Mukhtar Ansari.

In this phase in 2019, the BJP had won 9 seats while its ally Apna Dal ( Sonelal) had won Mirzapur and Sonbhadra seats. In the opposition, BSP, which had an alliance with the SP, had won Ghazipur and Ghosi seats during the last general elections.

The campaigning which ended this evening at 6 pm was impacted by the prevailing severe heatwave conditions.

As the soaring temperature crossed 45 degrees C in Purvanchal, the campaigning centred around small election meetings of big leaders.

Due to the heatwave, political party leaders and candidates focused their canvassing either in the morning hours or in the evening.

However in this phase , all focus is on Varanasi, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi is contesting for a hat-trick win. Though the PM has not addressed any meeting after his roadshow and filing of nominations on May 13-14, almost all the senior BJP and NDA leaders have camped in the temple city to woo the voters. The PM also sent letters and video messages to his Varanasi voters to seek their support. Before the end of the campaign, he also appealed to the people of Kashi to vote in large numbers.

The 13 Lok Sabha constituencies of this phase — Maharajganj, Gorakhpur, Kushinagar, Deoria, Bansgaon (SC), Ghosi, Salempur, Ballia, Ghazipur, Chandauli, Varanasi, Mirzapur, and Robertsganj (SC) — are located in 11 districts. The Duddhi Assembly by-election falls under the Sonbhadra district.

There are over 2.49 crore voters — 1.32 crore male and 1.17 crore female — in the 13 Lok Sabha constituencies of the seventh phase. There are a total of 14,183 polling stations and 25,658 polling booths in these constituencies.

Similarly, there are a total of 3.43 lakh voters — 1.80 lakh male and 1.63 lakh female — in 403-Duddhi (SC) assembly sub-constituency.

State Chief Electoral Officer( CEO) Navdeep Rinwa said here on Thursday that after the end of the campaigning at 6pm, all election-related activities and campaigns are prohibited in the 13 Lok Sabha constituencies and Duddhi, where byelection is being held.

Additionally, after the campaign period ends, the presence of external workers and officials from all political parties will be strictly forbidden in these constituencies.

The CEO said in view of the scorching heat, necessary arrangements have been made at the polling stations, which include cold drinking water, toilets for men and women, and wheelchairs and chairs for people with disabilities and older people.

Additionally, shades have been installed on the polling station premises extending to voter queues. Paramedics and ASHA workers at each polling station have been equipped with an ample supply of ORS and medical kits to safeguard against the heat. Paramedic staff has also been deployed alongside Sector Magistrates, he said.

The CEO said the emergency ambulance service is available and has been kept at suitable places so that, if needed, they can be quickly sent to the polling stations and polling booths.

The Chief Electoral Officer has advised the polling personnel and voters to use light cotton clothes while taking full precautions to avoid the heat.

“To protect from the scorching sun, keep a cap, umbrella, white cotton towel, or any other cloth covering the head. Keep a water bottle, and occasionally use plain water, lemonade or ORS as needed. On voting day, voters should reach the polling booths in large numbers and vote before the Sun is at its peak”, Rinwa appealed to the people.

Polling in these 13 Lok Sabha seats along with Dudhi assembly bypolls will be held from 7am to 6pm.

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