M A I N   N E W S

Phase 8: Spotlight on HP, U’khand, J-K, Andhra
All eyes on Rahul, Varun, Paswan
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 6
The General Election will enter its penultimate phase on Wednesday as voters in seven states will pick candidates for 64 constituencies in the eighth of the nine-phased poll.

A total of 18.47 crore voters shall exercise their franchise. Among the 1,737 candidates whose fate will be sealed tomorrow are the Gandhi cousins, Rahul (Amethi) and Varun (Sultanpur), Union Minister MM Pallam Raju, Andhra ex-chief minister NT Rama Rao’s daughter D Purandeshwari,

Union Minister Beni Prasad Verma, cricketer-turned-politician Mohd Kaif, Ram Vilas Paswan, Bihar ex-CM Rabri Devi, BJP national spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy, CPM’s Acharia Basudeb, actor Moon Moon Sen and singer Babul Supriyo.

With nearly half of the 64 seats going to the polls tomorrow, Congress appears to have an uphill task to perform when the whole of Seemandhra and parts of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal vote.

Conversely, its main rival BJP, which currently has only five seats in tomorrow's round, may have everything to gain if it improves its performance in parts of heartland UP (15 seats), Bihar (7) and Uttarakhand (5) that go to polls along with two constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir, six in West Bengal and four in HP. Seemandhra, comprising the areas of Rayalaseema and coastal Andhra, accounting for 25 parliamentary seats, will vote tomorrow for both LS and Assembly.


High stakes in Devbhoomi contests
Tribune News Service

Shimla, May 6
It’s a crucial Wednesday in Himachal Pradesh as 48.13 lakh voters will decide the fate of 42 candidates for four Lok Sabha and one Assembly seat. While the ruling Congress is struggling to improve its tally from the present one seat (Mandi), the Opposition BJP, too, has gone all out to retain the three seats of Shimla, Kangra and Hamirpur.

The stakes are high for Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh whose wife Pratibha Singh is contesting from Mandi and for Leader of Opposition PK Dhumal whose son and sitting MP Anurag Thakur is in the fray from Hamirpur. Former Union Minister and ex-CM Shanta Kumar is testing his luck from Kangra, the state’s largest LS constituency in terms of voters.

In the Shimla (reserved) seat, Rohru first-time legislator Mohan Lal Bragta is Virbhadra’s choice. He is locked in a close contest with BJP sitting MP Virender Kashyap, who was booked in March on a corruption charge.

As many as 48,13,071 electors will cast their vote. The polling will take place from 7 am to 6 pm. The main fight is between the Congress and the BJP.

battlefield himachal

Kangra: Shanta Kumar (BJP), Chander Kumar (Cong), Rajan Sushant (AAP)
Mandi: RS Sharma (BJP), Pratibha Singh (Cong), Jai Chand Thakur (AAP)
Hamirpur: Anurag Thakur (BJP), Rajinder Rana (Cong), KK Batra (AAP)
Shimla (Reserve): Virender Kashyap (BJP), ML Brakta (Cong), Subhash Chander (AAP)


Cong , BJP slug it out on all 5 U’khand seats
Tribune News Service

Dehradun, May 6
Around 68.8 lakh voters will decide the fate of 74 candidates vying for the five Lok Sabha seats in Uttarakhand tomorrow. The main contest for all five seats in the state is most likely to be between the Congress and the BJP.

Former Union Minister and BJP candidate BC Khanduri is pitted against Congress minister Harak Singh Rawat for the Pauri Garhwal Lok Sabha seat. Saket Bahuguna, son of former CM Vijay Bahuguna, will take on BJP’s Mala Raj Lakshmi Shah for the Tehri Garhwal seat. In Kumaon, sitting Congress MP KC Singh Baba is locked in a bitter contest with BJP candidate and former CM Bhagat Singh Koshiyari for the Nainital seat. For the Almora-Pithoragarh seat, sitting Congress MP Pradeep Tamta is contesting against BJP’s Ajay Tamta. Chief Minister Harish Rawat’s wife Renuka Rawat is the Congress candidate for the Haridwar seat. She is locked in a tough battle against former CM and BJP candidate Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank.

In all, 10,062 polling stations, equipped with 24,322 EVMs, have been set up in the state. The authorities have declared 732 polling booths as sensitive and 441 as hypersensitive. Additional Director of Police (ADG), Law and Order, RS Meena said, “A foolproof security plan has been chalked out for ensuring smooth conduct of polling. All security personnel have already reached places of their posting.”


Tight security in Baramulla

Srinagar, May 6
The parliamentary elections in J&K will conclude tomorrow with Baramulla and Ladakh constituencies going to the polls.

Tight security arrangements have been made in Baramulla which is close to the LoC. The main contest is between NC’s Sharifuddin Shariq and PDP’s Muzaffar Beigh. The four candidates in the fray in Ladakh are Tsering Samphel of the Congress, Thupstan Chhewang of the BJP and two Independent candidates Aga Syed Kazim Sabri and Ghulam Raza. — TNS

Pak violates truce

Pakistani troops opened heavy fire on three Indian forward posts in Mendhar sector along the LoC in Poonch district. 

Poll-eve attack in Sopore

In a poll-eve attack, militants opened fire on CRPF men in Baramulla on Tuesday. Militants targeted a bunker close to the SBI branch in Sopore injuring three jawans.




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