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Lok Sabha elections 2019 Phase 1 polling LIVE Updates- BSF fires in air after people try to vote without IDs in UP’s Kairana

Hindustan Times logo Hindustan Times 11-04-2019

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Full coverage: Elections 2019

6:25 pm IST: Polling percent in eight states till 5 pm

Poll % till 5 PM

Bihar: 50.26%

Telangana: 60.57%

Meghalaya: 62%

Uttar Pradesh: 59.77%

Manipur: 78.20%

Lakshadweep: 65.9%

Assam: 68%, reports news agency ANI.

6:12 PM IST: Polling ends in 16 LS constituencies of Telangana

Barring Nizamabad, polling for the Lok Sabha seats in Telangana ended peacefully at 5 p.m on Thursday. About 49 per cent voter turnout was recorded in all 17 constituencies till 5 p.m, reports news agency IANS.

5:54 pm IST Voting in Uttarakhand’s Haldwani concludes

Uttarakhand: Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) & VVPAT being packed at a polling station in Haldwani after voting there concludes, reports news agency ANI.

5:45 pm IST Zero polling reported in 15 booths in Malkangiri, Odisha due to Maoist fear

Due to the Maoist fear, it is reported that about 15 booths in Odisha’s Malkangiri saw zero polling.

5:29 pm IST: Voting in Bihar’s Jamui ends

Bihar: Visuals from Jamui where the EVMs and VVPATs are being taken to the strong room as the polling for the first phase of Lok Sabha Elections has concluded there, reports news agency ANI.

5:26 pm IST: Polling for first phase ends in Manipur’s Thoubal district

Manipur: Visuals from the polling station at Heirok High School in Heirok of Thoubal district where the polling for the first phase of Lok Sabha Elections has concluded, reports news agency ANI.

4:42 pm IST: Voter turnout at 3 pm

Voter turnout till 3 pm in Mizoram is 55.20%, in Tripura West parliamentary constituency is 68.65%, in West Bengal is 69.94%, in Odisha is 57%, in Andhra Pradesh is 55%, in Arunachal Pradesh is 50.87%, in Sikkim is 55% and in Jammu and Kashmir is 46.71% till 3 pm

3:43 pm IST: Voter turnout at 3pm

Voter turnout till 3 pm in Lakshadweep stood at 51.25%, in Uttarakhand at 46.59%, in Manipur at 68.90%, in Maharashtra’s Nagpur at 38.35% and in Uttar Pradesh 50.86%.

3:43 pm IST: Voter turnout at 3pm

Voter turnout till 3 pm in Lakshadweep stood at 51.25%, in Uttarakhand at 46.59%, in Manipur at 68.90% and in Uttar Pradesh 50.86%.

3:41 pm IST: Omar tweets Congress EVM button not working, EC replaces machines

After former chief minister Omar Abdullah claimed in a tweet that the button corresponding to the Congress symbol was not working in many EVMs in Poonch on Thursday, District Election Officer (DEO) Rahul Yadav said that the faulty EVMs have been replaced. “There was an issue with Congress button in Shahpur, our staff has replaced the machine. At polling station number 8, BJP button was not working, we changed that also. There was a problem with a different button at another polling station,” Yadav told ANI. “EVM is a machine. There may be problems with some. That is why we have kept 20 per cent machines in reserve. Machines are selected randomly. There is nothing like targeting a single party. Whenever such problems arise, we fix it quickly as per the guidelines of the Election Commission,” he added.

3:38 pm IST: EVMs replaced in Bijnor after discrepancies noticed during mock polling

At least, 10 electronic voting machines (EVMs) were replaced when discrepancies were detected during their mock trial here before the beginning of the polling, reported news agency ANI. Rakesh Kumar, Sector Magistrate Bijnor, said: “There were reports that some EVMs were displaying ‘lotus’ symbol after pressing the button against ‘elephant’ symbol at some polling booths.” “The elections are being held peacefully here. There were some issues during mock polling. So we changed the entire set of EVMs,” Kumar said.

3:23 pm IST: Poll official pressed BJP instead of BSP button for her, claims Dalit woman

A dalit woman in Uttar Pradesh’s Lauti Menk village, booth no 389 blamed an election staff of misleading her when she requested him for help in finding BSP symbol on EVM. The staff allegedly pressed button of ‘kamal’ and the woman raised the issue when she saw picture of lotus on VVPAT slip.

3:05 pm IST: Initial voter turnout encouraging: BJP

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday said the initial voter turnout across 91 Lok Sabha constituencies spread over 18 states and two Union Territories appears “encouraging” for the party. “The voter turnout in most areas was around 35 per cent and in some areas it even touched 40 per cent (in six hours). If this is the trend, the voter turnout is very encouraging,” Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told reporters in New Delhi. She said the party workers from various states have reported that the “mahaul” (atmosphere) was “encouraging”. “Voters are turning out to vote despite the hot weather. I am sure if this trend continues, we will have a good respectable voter turnout. The BJP and the NDA’s workers are feeling extremely motivated,” the Minister added.

3:01 pm IST: Chandrababu Naidu demands repoll in 150 booths

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) President N. Chandrababu Naidu on Thursday demanded repoll in around 150 polling stations due to the non-functioning of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs). In a letter to the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), Naidu identified more than 150 polling booths in Andhra Pradesh and said, “I demand conduct of repoll in all the above polling stations and such other polling stations where the polling has not commenced even at 9.30 a.m. due to the failure of EVMs.”

2:44 pm IST: EC refutes Balyan’s allegation of fake voting in Muzaffarnagar

Hours after Muzaffarnagar BJP candidate Sanjeev Balyan alleged ‘fake voting’ in his constituency, the Election Commission on Thursday refuted his claim, saying women officials verify everyone wearing a veil, reported news agency ANI. Balyan, a former Union minister, has alleged that faces of burqa-clad women were not being verified by poll officials in his Lok Sabha constituency and fake votes were being cast. Brahmdeo Ram Tiwari, Additional Chief Election Officer, said: “If a woman is in a veil, there are women officials who verify their identity, and only then they are allowed to vote.” He added that no such incident had come to the Commission’s notice. Balyan has said that he will demand a re-poll if his concerns are not addressed.

2:42 pm IST: Mobile internet stopped in north Kashmir

As polling is underway for two Lok Sabha constituencies of Jammu and Kashmir in the first phase of Lok Sabha elections in 2019, mobile internet has been stopped in north Kashmir.

2:24 pm IST: Candidate from Odisha’s Chikiti beaten up, alleges BJP 

BJP has alleged that its candidate from Chikiti assembly constituency, Manoranjan Dyansamantray has been beaten up.

2:17 pm IST: As crowd turns violent, BSF fires in air in UP’s Kairana

BSF fired in air in self defence in Rasoolpur Jugran village of Uttar Pradesh’s Kairana constituency. The security personnel tried to stop the people who were without IDs from casting votes and the crowd then turned violent. Situation is under control and voting is now underway, said DM Shamli Akhilesh Kumar

2:13 pm IST: 39 complaints from Congress to EC of EVM glitches at poll booths

The Congress on Thursday sent 39 complaints to the Election Commission (EC) about “glitches” in the functioning of EVMs at some booths in six Lok Sabha seats of Maharashtra where polling was underway, the party said. The state Congress in statement said it made 12 complaints to the EC via e-mail, pointing out glitches in the electronic voting machines (EVMs) at some booths in Nagpur, followed by eight such complaints in Chandrapur, six in Wardha and five in Ramtek. The party also sent four complaints each of such snags in Yavatmal-Washim and Gadchiroli-Chimur seats, it said.

2:02 pm IST: APCC asks EC to bar live telecast of PM’s speeches

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi scheduled to address two rallies in Assam on Thursday, even amid polling in the state, the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) has asked the Election Commission (EC) stop a live telecast of his speeches. Votes are being cast in five Lok Sabha constituencies in Assam in the first phase of polling. Modi is scheduled to address a rally at Kendukona in Kamrup district around 2.30 pm followed by another one at Cachar district in Barak Valley around 4.30 pm. “To ensure a level playing to all contestants from different political parties and implement the provisions of the model code of conduct, we request you to keep a strict vigil so that no local, national television channel is allowed to live telecast speeches of Prime Minister Modi today while the polling is on,” APCC President Ripun Bora said in his letter to the EC.

2:00 pm IST: Uttarakhand legislator violates MCC

Mahendra Bhatt, a legislator from Uttarakhand, violated the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) on Thursday by clicking photos after casting his vote inside a polling booth in Badrinath, reported news agency ANI. Bhatt is the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA from Badrinath and was elected in February 2017 when the BJP stormed to power in the state with an overwhelming majority. As per the MCC, carrying a mobile phone or clicking photos inside a polling booth is prohibited.

1:53 pm IST: Grand alliance no threat for BJP in Ghaziabad: VK Singh 

The BJP does not feel a threat from the grand alliance here as it has done enough developmental work in the area to seek the support of voters, sitting BJP MP and former Army chief VK Singh said on Thursday. Speaking to IANS after casting his vote here along with his wife, he said his party was focusing on development issues across the country as well as in Ghaziabad. “Since 2014, my as well as my party’s priority have been development, development and development. People are liking that. I am very confident that people will vote for me for the work I have done,” he told IANS. “Even when the opposition parties are united here, they are not a threat to me or the BJP. The people of Ghaziabad had been voting for development and they will continue to do so. Have you ever heard the opposition candidates speaking about development of the area?” he said.

1:51 pm IST: Renuka Chowdhury confident of victory in Khammam

Congress leader and former Union Minister Renuka Chowdhury, who is contesting elections from Khammam Lok Sabha seat, cast her vote here on Thursday. Talking to ANI, Chowdhury said, “The values that we stand for and the work Congress has done. The values which Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi represents to the nation. I am very optimistic that these values will make the voters and make them vote for the hand...I am hopeful that we will be able to win this race as we are running the last mile,” Chowdhury said. The Congress has fielded Renuka Chowdhury against Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) candidate Nageshwar Rao. Both Renuka and Nageshwar had defeated each other in the previous elections.

1:34 pm IST: Voter turnout at 1 pm

At 1 pm, the voter turnout in Uttarakhand stood at 41.27%, 38.78% in Uttar Pradesh and 41% in Odisha, 57% in Nagaland, 33.50% in Bihar and 53.44% in Manipur.1:19 pm IST: MDA will win this election, says Meghalaya CM

Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma on Thursday voiced confidence that candidates of the ruling Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) will win both the Shillong and Tura Lok Sabha seats. An estimated 35 per cent of the 19,14,795 voters their votes till 11:45 a.m., Chief Electoral Officer Frederick Roy Kharkongor said. The MDA has fielded former Union minister and National People’s Party (NPP) nominee Agatha Sangma from Tura and former United Democratic Party (UDP) legislator Jemino Mawthoh from Shillong seat. “We are very confident that both Agatha and Mawthoh will win this election as people have reposed faith in the government,” Conrad told IANS after casting his vote.

1:18 pm IST: Naxals trigger IED blast near polling booth

Naxals triggered an IED blast near a polling booth in Maharashtra’s Gadchroli district Thursday while voting was underway, police said. The IED (improvised explosive device) blast took place around 10.30 am in Waghezari area, around 150 metres from the polling booth where people were standing in queues to cast their votes for the Lok Sabha election, an official said. No casualty was reported in the incident, he said.

1:13 pm IST: Tollywood actors arrive at polling stations

Tollywood actors Naga Chaitanya and Samantha arrive at a polling station in Nanakramguda, Gachibowli to cast their vote for Lok Sabha Elections 2019.

1:05 pm IST: Ramdev casts vote in Haridwar

Yog-Guru Ramdev cast his vote at a polling station in Haridwar in the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019.

12:48 pm IST: Namo food packets ordered for polling staff in Noida

Controversy erupted in Noida after lunch packs from ‘Namo Foods’ were ordered for the polling staff at Sector 15A polling station in Noida on Thursday. While some residents and voters complained that police teams were violating the code of conduct, officials denied the claims. The food packets were quickly sent back or tucked away out of public notice. Within an hour, not even discarded packets were seen at the polling station. Officials at the booth claimed that after starting the day early, the police team had ordered early lunch around 10am from a restaurant called ‘Namo Foods’, the name being merely “coincidental”. The packets arrived at the polling booth just before Dr Mahesh Sharma arrived to cast his vote.

12:39 pm IST: TDP candidate locks himself inside polling booth 

AP assembly speaker and TDP candidate from Guntur’s Narsaraopet Kodela Sivaprasad Rao stormed into a polling booth at Inimetla village and bolts himself from inside. YSRC agents protested and raised slogans. the police had to forcibly bring Kodela out and whisk him away.

12:32 pm IST: YSRCP candidate attacked by TDP workers in Andhra 

YSRCP candidate from Narasaraopet assembly constituency Gopireddy Srinivas Reddy was injured after his car was allegedly attacked by TDP workers in Yallamanda village in Guntur district.

12:29 am IST: TDP worker killed in clash with YSRC workers in Andhra 

TDP worker Siddha Bhaskar Reddy was killed in clashes between TDP and YSRC workers at Meerapuram village of Tadipatri assembly segment in Andhra’s Anantapur district. Both the party workers indulged in stone pelting against each other.

12:10 am IST: EVM glitches mar voting in Maharashtra

Glitches in VVPAT-EVMs marred voting in some polling stations, resulting in long queues of voters in the blistering heat on Thursday. The problems, were found in Booth No. 127 (Gadchiroli-Chimur constituency), booth No. 147 (Yavatmal-Washim), with the electronic voting machines (EVMs) functioning extremely slowly and delaying the voting process. “There are massive queues outside these polling stations. Since past one hour, barely four people have cast their votes. We have complained to the local Election Commission officials to make alternative EVMs available immediately,” said a state Congress spokesperson. There are reports of similar EVM issues from a polling station in Bhandara-Gondiya, details of which are awaited, he added.

11:49 am IST: KT Rama Rao casts his vote  

Working president of Telangana Rashtra Samithi, KT Rama Rao casts his vote at a polling booth in Telangana’s Hyderabad.

11:46 am IST: Nizamabad may enter Guinness Book with record EVMs 

The Nizamabad Lok Sabha constituency, where polling was underway on Thursday along with 16 other constituencies in Telangana, may make it the Guinness World Records for the maximum number of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) used. With 185 candidates, a majority of them farmers, entering the fray, the Election Commission is using 12 EVMs in each polling station. The polling in this constituency began at 8 a.m., an hour after the process began in the remaining constituencies. Telangana Chief Electoral Officer Rajat Kumar said the mock-polling in Nizamabad took two hours and hence they started polling at 8 a.m. “The polling is going on smoothly barring at two-three places where EVMs were replaced. In the first hour, 3.6 percent polling was recorded,” he said.

11:40 am IST: Voter turnout at 11 am 

Voter turnout at 11 am stood at 41% in Nagaland, 35.03 % in Manipur, 27% in Meghalaya, 27.48% in Arunachal Pradesh, 22.84% in Telangana, and 23. 78 % in Uttarakhand.

11:33 am IST: Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb cast his vote in Udaipur 

Tripura chief minister Biplab Kumar Deb cast his vote in Udaipur

11:29 am IST: Re-polling needed in booths where EVMs didn’t function till 9:30 am: Naidu writes to CEC 

“Likely that many voters who returned may not come back for voting even if polling is resumed after replacement / repair of existing EVMs.Therefore re-polling is needed in all polling stations where polling had not commenced upto 9.30am,” said Andhra Pradesh CM N Chandrababu Naidu in letter to CEC, reported news agency ANI.

11:26 am IST: Nearly 21% voter turnout in 2 hours in Meghalaya 

Voting is underway in Shillong and Tura Lok Sabha constituencies in Meghalaya on Thursday amid reports of technical snags in electronic voting machines (EVMs). Nearly 21 per cent of the 19,14,795 electors with 52 per cent women cast their votes in the first two hours, Chief Electoral Officer Frederick Roy Kharkongor said. “Till 9 a.m., 17.71 per cent voter turnout has been recorded in Shillong parliamentary constituency and 18.32 per cent in Tura seat,” he said. Kharkongor said one Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trial (VVPAT) was malfunctioning in one polling booth in Pynthorumkhrah Assembly constituency under Shillong parliamentary seat but it was later replaced with a new one.

11:22 am IST: Telangana CM K Chandrasekhar Rao casts vote

Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao casts vote in his native village Chintamadaka under Siddipet LS

11:20 am IST: EC uses drones in polling stations for surveillance 

The Election Commission has employed the use of drones for surveillance in polling stations in several constituencies of Uttar Pradesh and other states.

11:18 am IST: 11.40% polling till 9 am in eight Lok Sabha seats of western UP 

The eight Lok Sabha constituencies of western Uttar Pradesh, where polling is being held in the first of the seven-phase general elections, registered 11.40 per cent voter turnout till 9 am, an official said. The electoral fate of three Union ministers -- V K Singh (Ghaziabad), Satyapal Singh (Baghpat) and Mahesh Sharma (Gautam Buddha Nagar) -- will be determined in this phase. The BJP is making all-out effort to retain all the eight seats while the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party-Rashtriya Lok Dal alliance too is going whole hog to upset the saffron party’s applecart. In the first phase, 1,50,65,682 voters, including 68,39,833 females and 1,014 third genders, will decide the fate of 96 candidates. In the 2014 parliamentary elections, the BJP had won all the eight seats--- Saharanpur, Kairana, Muzaffarnagar, Bijnor, Meerut, Baghpat, Ghaziabad and Gautam Buddh Nagar -- that figure in the first phase of this election. While the Muzaffarnagar seat will see a clash of titans with RLD chief Ajit Singh locking horns with sitting BJP lawmaker Sanjeev Balyan, the Kairana parliamentary constituency holds immense significance for the saffron party as it had tasted defeat in the Lok Sabha bye-election last year.

11:16 am IST: Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal casts his vote 

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal casts his vote at a polling station in Dibrugarh as polling kicked off for the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019.

11:15 am IST: 18% votes cast in Bengal in two hours

Amid stray violence and EVM glitches, Cooch Behar and Alipurduar constituencies in West Bengal polled 18 per cent votes in the first two hours of polling on Thursday as the Lok Sabha polls kicked off in the country. Of the total over 34 lakh voters in these constituencies, an average 18.10 per cent had polled till 9 a.m., an Election Commission official told IANS in Kolkata. Long queues could be seen in front of the booths in both the constituencies from well before the polling process began at 7 a.m. Voting process in a number of polling stations in Cooch Behar was temporarily disrupted for sometime as EVM machines stopped working. Trinamool Congress district chief Rabindranath Ghosh alleged a conspiracy and said he had complained to the District Magistrate. “How can so many EVMs go bad? We smell a conspiracy. I have tried to complain to the Election Commission but they are not reachable. So I have informed the District Magistrate,” Ghosh said.

11:07 am IST: In Tripura, complaints of voters being forced out without casting vote: Police 

In Tripura, police said they have heard of the complaints that voters in many areas were forced to vacate the booth without casting vote. However, they haven’t received any complaint of attack on anyone as of now. CPM candidate and sitting MP from West Tripura constituency Shankar Prasad Datta complained that two of their polling agents in Ranirbazar and Jogendranagar area were attacked and now they have admitted to the hospital. He also alleged many of the voters were forced to leave the polling booths in many places without casting their votes.

10:57 am IST: Congress to suffer 5-0 whitewash: Uttarakhand CM

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat on Thursday said he was expecting a 5-0 whitewash of the Congress in the Lok Sabha elections. “I am expecting a 5-0 whitewash of (the) Congress. We will repeat the feat of 2014,” said Rawat after casting his vote along with his family members at the Defence Colony area in the Haridwar parliamentary constituency. In 2014, the BJP won all the five seats in the state. Several top BJP and Congress leaders also voted. “We will win with a huge margin,” stated BJP President Ajay Bhatt, who voted at Ranikhet in Almora district.

10:52 am IST: 13.73% voting recorded in first 3 hours in Bihar 

An estimated 13.73 per cent voting was recorded in the first three hours of polling that began amid tight security in four Lok Sabha seats in Bihar in the first leg of the seven-phased election. Few incidents of EVM malfunctioning were reported in some booths under Nawada Lok Sabha constituency, and a cane bomb was found at a polling station in Gaya district before voting began at 7 am. Polling is underway in the four Lok Sabha seats of Aurangabad, Gaya, Nawada and Jamui. “Polling has, so far, been peaceful in the constituencies,” Joint Chief Electoral Officer Pravin Kumar Gupta told PTI.

10:37 am IST: Two women voters injured as TDP and YSRC workers clash in Andhra

Two women voters were injured as TDP and YSRC workers indulged in stone pelting at Jammalamadugu in Andhra Pradesh’s Kadapa district.

10:32 am IST: 362 EVMs in Andhra found malfunctioning: Chief electoral officer 

According to chief electoral officer A K Dwivedi, 362 out of 45,000-odd EVMs in Andhra Pradesh were found to be malfunctioning.

10:25 am IST: 30% EVM in Andhra were not functioning till 10 am: Naidu 

AP chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu wrote to Chief Electoral Officer saying 30 per cent of the EVMs were not functioning till 10 am, as per the reports obtained by him. He has demanded re-polling in the polling stations, where EVMs did not function. He alleged that in some polling stations, voting for TDP is being recorded as voting for YSRC.

10:23 am IST: Nitin Gadkari casts his vote

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari cast his vote at polling booth number 220 in Maharashtra’s Nagpur parliamentary constituency .

10:06 am IST: Voting is our duty, everyone should vote: Bhagwat opposes NOTA 

Voting is our duty, everyone should vote: Bhagwat opposes NOTA Nagpur, Apr 11 (PTI) RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat Thursday said voters should exercise their franchise for any candidate, instead of opting for the None of the Above (NOTA) option available on the electronic voting machines (EVMs). Bhagwat was talking to reporters after casting his vote in Maharashtra’s Nagpur constituency, where Union minister Nitin Gadkari is the BJP’s candidate. “Voting is our duty. Everyone should vote,” the RSS chief said. Voters should not use the NOTA option, he added. Bhagwat along with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) general secretary Bhaiyyaji Joshi arrived at a polling booth at Bhauji Daftari School in Mahal area here around 6.50 am.

10:04 am IST: AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi casts his vote

AIMIM chief and Hyderabad MP candidate Asaduddin Owaisi cast his vote at a polling booth in the city. He is a three time sitting MP from the constituency.

10:03 am IST: Voter turnout in different states

As polling began for the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019, at 9 am voter turnout in Telangana stood at 10.6%, Andaman and Nicobar Islands at 5.83 %, Assam at 10.2% , Arunachal Pradesh at 13.3%, Tripura at 11.02% and Lakshwadweep at 9.83%.

9:57 am IST: Voter turnout in Meghalaya is 20.41%, Mizoram is 17.4 %

At 9 am, the polling percentage in the two Lok Sabha seats of Meghalaya stood at 20.41%, while the voter turnout in Mizoram stood at 17.4 %.

9:54 am IST: Here is the voter turnout on 8 Lok Sabha seats in UP

Voter turnout till 9 am in Uttar Pradesh’s Saharanpur- 13.08%, Kairana-11%, Muzaffarnagar-12%, Meerut- 11%, Bijnor - 11.40, Baghpat - 10.19%, Ghaziabad - 12% and Gautam Budh Nagar-10.70%.

9:51 am IST: Want to vote for someone who would raise our specific issues: Bandipora voter

“This time we want to vote for someone who would raise our specific issues in Parliament, we want harmony in the region and as you can see voting is underway smoothly and in a peaceful manner,” said Ghulam Mohd,voter in Jammu and Kashmir’s Bandipora, reported news agency ANi.

9:48 am IST: Jana Sena candidate smashes EVM, arrested 

Jana Sena MLA candidate Madhusudhan Gupta smashed an Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) at a polling booth in Gooty, in Andhra Pradesh’s Anantapur district. He has been arrested by the police.

9:43 am IST: TDP, YSRCP activists clash at polling booths in Andhra’s Kadapa

In Pedamogalayapalli village of Rapthadu assembly segment in Andhra Pradesh’s Anantapur, a mob in a fight at a polling booth, as the YSRC alleged that unauthorised people were entering the polling station One person was injured, as TDP and YSRC activists clashed in Mydukuru of the faction-ridden Kadapa district. Similar clashes were reported between TDP and YSRC workers at Gudem Cheruvu village in Kadapa’s Jammalamadugu assembly segment.

9:40 am IST: BJP urges voters to participate in festival of democracy

“We appeal to every eligible voter to participate in this festival of democracy called elections by exercising your right to vote. Make your vote count and vote wisely for a stronger and prosperous New India,” tweeted BJP.

9:35 am IST: ‘Vote today for soul of India’, tweets Congress chief Rahul Gandhi

“You vote today for the soul of India. For her future. Vote wisely,” tweeted Congress national president Rahul Gandhi.

9:31 am IST: Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat casts his vote

Uttarakhand chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat cast his vote at polling booth number 124 in Defence Colony, Dehradun.

9:30 am IST: 21% voter turnout till 9 am in Nagaland

The voter turnout till 9 am stood at 21% in Nagaland, as voting began for the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019.

9:23 am IST: 10 % voter turnout in Meerut till 9 am

As voting began across 18 states, and two Union Territories, for the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019, voter turnout in Uttar Pradesh’s Meerut stood at 10%.

9:20 am IST: TRS president KCR’s daughter stands in queue for 40 min owing to EVM glitch

Owing to EVM glitches at the polling booth in Telangana’s Pothangal village, TRS president KCR’s daughter and Nizamabad MP Kalvakuntla Kavitha has been standing in the queue for the past 40 minutes.

9:19 am IST: Here is a look at state-wise Lok Sabha seats

9:14 am IST: Voters turn up in huge numbers in Jammu and Kashmir 

People are turning up in large numbers to vote as two Lok Sabha constituencies Jammu and Baramulla are up for polls today in the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019.

9:11 am IST: BJP MP Sanjiv Balyan alleges fake voting, approaches Election Commission

BJP MP from Muzzaffarnagar Sanjiv Balyan has alleged fake voting and has approached the Election Commission in this regard.

9:02 am IST: Angry voters damage defunct EVM in Andhra

Angry voters at a polling booth in Andhra Pradesh’s Vinukonda in Guntur damaged a dysfunctional EVM. Upset over delayed voting due to EVM trouble, CM Chandrababu Naidu has said that he will file a review petition on counting of VVPAT slips.

8:45 am IST: 10% polling in one hour in Uttarakhand

Nearly 10 per cent of 78.56 lakh voters cast their votes in the first hour as voting began on Thursday for five seats from Uttarakhand in the first phase of the Lok Sabha elections, a poll officer said. The Bharatiya Janata Party is virtually locked in a straight battle against arch-rival Congress in all the five seats. Voting which began at 7 a.m. will continue till 5 p.m., said Chief Electoral Officer Saujanya. People were seen queuing up outside the polling booths even before the voting exercise started. There are 52 candidates trying their luck at the hustings. All arrangements have been completed in advance for a “fair and free” election using EVMs with 137 per cent VVPATs (37 per cent reserved), said Saujanya.

8:43 am IST: Polling underway for 5 Lok Sabha seats in Assam

Voting was underway on Thursday for the five of a total 14 Lok Sabha seats in Assam in the first phase of polling. Voting started at 7 a.m., across 9 ,574 polling stations in the five constituencies of Kaliabar, Tezpur, Jorhat, Dibrugarh and Lakhimpur. A total of 76,03,458 electorates are eligible to cast their ballots. Out of the 9,574 polling stations, 201 are reserved for women. A total of 41 candidates are in the fray. The Election Commission of India has deployed a total of 180 companies of security personnel to ensure smooth polling. Apart from this, a minimum of one constable has been deployed in every polling station, officials at the office of the Chief Electoral Officer here said.

8:40 am IST: Voting begins in Bastar

As polling for the first phase of Lok Sabha elections began this morning, voters have also gathered at poll booths in Maoist affected Bastar.

8:37 am IST: ‘Undercurrent for Modi’: BJP leader Sangeet Som

“Undercurrent for Modi,” said BJP leader Sangeet Som and added that the BJP will win 7 out of 8 constituencies of first phase polling in Uttar Pradesh. “People are with BJP in the rural area,” he further said. Sangeet Som is a vocal leader but remained silence through out the poll campaign. No statements from appeared in the media. ‘I was doing my task given by the party’, he said.

8:28 am IST: Long queues of voters since 5 am in Bengal

Long queues of voters were seen as early as 5 am in some areas of Cooch Behar constituency. Trinamool Congress candidate from Alipurduars constituency Dasrath Tirkey went to cast his vote with his party symbol displayed on his chest. However, he removed it when it was pointed out to him. There were reports of EVM malfunctioning in a few booths. As many as 18 candidates are in the fray in these two constituencies.

8:25 am IST: TDP MP candidate Kesineni Srinivas casts his vote

TDP MP candidate from Andhra Pradesh’s Vijaywada, Kesineni Srinivas cast his vote at a polling booth in St. Joseph Girl’s High School, Gunadala, Vijaywada.

8:23 am IST: Voters welcomes with flower shower in UP’s Baghpat

As voting for the first phase of Lok Sabha elections began today, voters in Uttar Pradesh’s Baghpat were welcomed with a shower of flower petals and the beats of ‘dhol’ at polling booth number 126 in Baraut.

8:18 am IST: Former Uttarakhand CM Harish Rawat queues up to vote

Former chief minister Harish Rawat queued up to vote for the Lok Sabha Elections 2019 in Uttarakhand’s Devalchaur, Haldwani. Voting on two parliamentary constituencies in the state is being held today. Former CM Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank also cast his vote at a polling booth in Dehradun.

8:15 am IST: Security tightened in Jammu and Kashmir

Two seats in the violence-hit Jammu and Kashmir, Jammu and Baramulla, are voting today amid a boycott call by separatists and tight security to offset protests sweeping the Valley against an order to restrict civilian movement on highways two days a week. In the sensitive Baramulla seat, there-tier security is in place with 400 additional companies [a unit typically comprising between 80 and 150 personnel] of forces deployed for security of the polling stations, voters and staff. Officials said around 30,000 additional forces have been deployed.

8:05 am IST: Actor Junior NTR casts vote in Hyderabad

Popular Telugu film actor Junior NTR and his wife cast vote at the polling booth in Jubilee Hills in Hyderabad.

8:04 am IST: AP CM N Chandrababu Naidu casts vote

Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu, and family casts their vote at Undavalli, in Guntur district.

8:02 am IST: Hope people vote for change: YSR Congress president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy casts his vote

YSR Congress president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy today cast his vote at a polling station in Pulivendula in Kadapa district. “Hope people are voting for change, and they must vote without fear” said Reddy. “People are looking for a change,” he added saying that he is confident of a clear cut majority this time.

7:58 am IST: First times voters turn up at poll booth

As first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019 began today, 19 year-old tribal student Sandeep Soren, 19, a first time voter cast his vote in Malkangiri in Odisha.

7:51 am IST: Technical glitches disrupt voting in Andhra

TDP, YSRCP booth agents sparred at a polling booth Andhra Pradesh’s Narasaraopet . Machilipatnam assembly TDP candidate Kollu Ravindra had to cast his vote in darkness since there was no power at the booth. In Andhra’s Gooty constituency of Anantapur, Jana Sena candidate Madhusudhan Gupta smashed the EVM alleging his name was not properly written on EVM.

7:49 am IST: In Bihar’s four seats, Chirag Paswan, Jitan Ram Manjhi to try their luck 

The first phase of the seven phase Lok Sabha elections begins on Thursday morning at 7 am. Among the 20 states that goes to polls is Bihar. Elaborate security arrangements have been made in Gaya, Jamui, Nawada and Aurangabad, the four constituencies of Bihar that go to polls in the first phase. In the four seats, as many as 44 candidates are in the fray. The four constituencies will have 7,486 polling booths with adequate central para military forces, Bihar Military Police and Special Armed Police deployed there to check any untoward incidents. As many as 45,000 polling personnel have been deployed for the election process. Among the more prominent names that are trying their luck are Lok Janshakti Party MP Chirag Paswan who is contesting from Jamui who will be contesting against his predecessor RLS’s Bhudeo Chaudhary, who was earlier with the JD(U). Chaudhary had won the seat in 2009 on an NDA ticket.

7:47 am IST: Nitin Gadkari, Kiren Rijiju and VK Singh among Union ministers in the fray

Seven Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra will go to polls, with Union roads minister Nitin Gadkari locked in a battle with Congress’s Nana Patole, a former BJP MP, in Nagpur. Union minister and BJP leader, Hansaraj Ahir, is seeking a fourth term from Chandrapur.

In Bihar, four Lok Sabha seats will see Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) leader Chirag Paswan take on Bhudeo Chaudhary of the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party in Jamui. In the North-east, Union minister Kiren Rijiju will seek election from Arunachal Pradesh West constituency; four seats in Assam will go to polls, with former chief minister Tarun Gogoi’s son Gaurav Gogoi fighting from Kaliabor.

7:43 am IST: Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim vote for new assemblies today

Ninety-one Lok Sabha constituencies spread across 18 states and two UTs, including all in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, will go to polls on Thursday in the first-phase, with Nitin Gadkari, Kiren Rijiju and VK Singh among several Union ministers in the fray. In Andhra Pradesh, Sikkim and Odisha, assembly polls to 175, 32 and 28 seats, respectively, will be held simultaneously in the first phase.

7:40 am IST: 26 candidates are in the fray for the four Lok Sabha seats in Odisha

In the first phase, 26 candidates are in the fray for the four Lok Sabha seats, while 191 candidates are contesting for the 28 Assembly seats. In the first phase, a total of 60, 03,707 voters are eligible to cast their votes that will determine the fate of candidates of ruling Biju Janata Dal, opposition BJP and Congress. In the first phase, the women voters outnumber women. There are 29, 72, 925 are male voters and 30, 30, 222 female voters. State chief electoral officer Surendra Kumar said the Election Commission has deployed 47, 805 officials for conduct of elections in 7,233 polling stations across the State.

7:39 IST: Simultaneous assembly elections in Odisha

Polling for first phase of election in 4 Lok Sabha & 28 Assembly constituencies of Odisha started this morning with people queuing up to cast their votes. The Election Commission has made extensive arrangements for polling scheduled to be held in four Lok Sabha constituencies- Kalahandi, Nabarangapur, Berhampur and Koraput and the 28 Assembly seats falling under these segments. Odisha is also having simultaneous elections to the 147 member assembly apart from the Lok Sabha elections.

7:37 am IST: In voting for first phase, big test for Akhilesh-Mayawati’s grand alliance

The Uttar Pradesh alliance led by Mayawati and Akhilesh Yadav – once bitter rivals who teamed up in an effort to defeat the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party – faces its first test in Thursday’s polling. Nearly 15 million people across eight western Uttar Pradesh constituencies are eligible to vote in the first of the seven-phase national election. In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP had won all the eight seats: Saharanpur, Kairana, Muzaffarnagar, Bijnor, Meerut, Baghpat, Ghaziabad and Gautam Buddh Nagar. That is when Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party and Akhilesh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party were also on opposite side.

7:35 am IST: APCC president N Raghuveera Reddy casts vote

As voting began in 91 Lok Sabha constituencies, spread across 18 states and two union territories, APCC president N Raghuveera Reddy casts vote in Neelakanthapuram village of Madakasira constituency in Andhra Pradesh’s Anantapur.

7:26 am IST: Voters begin to arrive at Vishapkhapatnam poll booth

Visuals from a polling booth in Andhra Pradesh’s Vishapkhapatnam as voting begins for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 . Voting on 25 parliamentary constituencies in the state is being held today.

7:21 am IST: PM Modi urges voters to turn out in record numbers

“Lok Sabha Elections 2019 commence today. I call upon all those whose constituencies are voting in the first phase today to turn out in record numbers and exercise their franchise. I specially urge young and first-time voters to vote in large numbers,” said PM Narendra Modi.

7:15 am IST: Voters line up outside Odisha’s Malkangiri

People in Maoist affected Malkangiri district begin arriving at poll booths to cast their vote. Odisha’s Malkangiri district is part of Nabarangpur Parliamentary constituency which goes to polls in the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019, happening today.

7:11 am IST: Polling begins in Andhra and Telangana

At 7 am Thursday, polling began in the Telugu states of Andhra and Telangana. In addition to Lok Sabha elections, the states of Andhra Pradesh will also vote for new assembly. The biggest chunk of seats are up for grabs in Andhra Pradesh, which was carved out of a larger coastal province in 2014. Polling for all 25 Lok Sabha and 175 assembly seats will be held simultaneously. There are 2,118 candidates for the state polls and 319 for the Lok Sabha elections, whose fate will be decided by roughly 39 million voters.

7:08 am IST: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat at polling booth in Nagpur to cast his vote

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat arrives at polling booth number 216 in Maharashtra’s Nagpur, to cast his vote for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 . Voting on 7 parliamentary constituencies in the state will be held today.

7:01 am IST: Voting begins

India’s staggered general elections kicked off at 7 am on Thursday with 91 Lok Sabha seats spread across 18 states and two union territories going to the polls, the first day of a nearly six-week-long process that constitutes the world’s largest democratic exercise.

6:48 am IST: Visuals from polling booth in Bengal’s Cooch Behar

Outside visuals from polling booths 173,174 and 175 in Cooch Behar, ahead of the voting for Lok Sabha Elections 2019. Voting on two parliamentary constituencies in the state for the first phase of elections will be held today.

6:40 am IST: Voters begin to arrive at poll booths in Assam’s Dibrugarh

Voters begin to arrive at polling booths 156 and 158 in Assam’s Dibrugarh ahead of the voting for the first phase Lok Sabha Elections 2019 voting on 5 parliamentary constituencies in the state will be held today.

6:06 am IST: Preparation underway at booth number 284 in Gondia for the Gondia parliamentary constituency

Maharashtra: Preparation underway for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 at booth number 284 in Gondia for the Gondia parliamentary constituency.

6:00 am IST: 91 Lok Sabha constituencies across 18 states, 2 UTs going to vote today

Ninety-one Lok Sabha constituencies spread across 18 states and two Union Territories, including all in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, will go to polls on Thursday in the first-phase.

Watch: LS polls 2019 - Big names in fray for first phase

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