Polling for 102 Lok Sabha seats kicks off today : The Tribune India

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Polling for 102 Lok Sabha seats kicks off today

102 seats in 21 states up for grabs in 1st of 7 phases

Polling for 102 Lok Sabha seats kicks off today

Officials at a high-level command & control centre keep a watch for violations of the model code in Jammu. PTI



Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 18

As many as 102 seats across 21 states will go to the polls in the first phase of the General Election, which kicks off on Friday, with 16.63 crore voters eligible to cast ballot at 1.87 lakh polling stations.

Security up in J&K as Udhampur votes

Jammu: Elaborate security arrangements have been made in all districts under the Udhampur Lok Sabha constituency which will go to the polls on Friday where the BJP, Congress and the DPAP candidates will face each other. Polling parties for the Udhampur constituency were dispatched to the respective polling booths amid tight security.

Eight Union ministers, including Nitin Gadkari; two former chief ministers, including Sarbananda Sonowal; and a former Governor are in the fray in the first phase.

There are 8.4 crore male and 8.23 female voters, with 11,371 third gender registered voters in the first phase. More than 35.67 lakh first-time voters are eligible to exercise their franchise. Additionally, there are 3.51 crore young voters in the age group 20-29 years.

Fate of 1,625 candidates, including 1,491 male and 134 female, will be decided in the initial phase. As many as 41 helicopters, 84 special trains and nearly one lakh vehicles have been deployed to ferry polling and security personnel.

The Election Commission has taken a slew of measures for peaceful and smooth conduct of the election. Central forces have been deployed adequately at polling stations to secure the polling process.

Webcasting will be conducted in more than 50 per cent of the polling stations along with deployment of micro-observers in all polling stations. A total of 361 observers (127 general observers, 67 police observers, 167 expenditure observers) had reached their constituencies ahead of the polling, the EC said. Additionally, special observers have been deployed in certain states.

A total of 4,627 flying squads, 5,208 statistics surveillance teams, 2,028 video surveillance teams and 1,255 video viewing teams were keeping round-the-clock surveillance to strictly and swiftly deal with any form of inducement of voters, the poll panel informed further.

As many as 1,374 inter-state and 162 international border check posts were keeping a vigil on illicit flow of liquor, drugs and cash, the EC added.

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