Phase 5 polls see 57% turnout till 5 pm, netas, celebrities cast vote in Mumbai

Voting for 49 Lok Sabha constituencies across six states and two Union Territories is currently underway. All eyes are on Amethi and Raebareli, where Congress and the BJP are in high-profile contests. The Election Commission has called upon voters to vote in greater numbers.
Phase 5 polls see 57% turnout till 5 pm, netas, celebrities cast vote in Mumbai
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Polling for the fifth phase of Lok Sabha elections is currently underway in 49 constituencies across six states and two Union Territories. Sporadic incidents of violence have been reported in several constituencies of Bengal, including Barrackpore, Bongaon, Arambagh and Howrah seats. However, the voting has been brisk across the seats.

The focus in this round is primarily on Congress bastions Amethi and Raebareli where Rahul Gandhi and Smriti Irani are in high-profile contests. While Rahul Gandhi is up against BJP's Dinesh Pratap Singh from Raebareli, Irani is fighting against Congress loyalist Kishori Lal Sharma.

The overall voter turnout till 5 pm was 56.68% per cent, with West Bengal accounting for the highest turnout at 73 per cent, followed by Ladakh at 67.15 per cent and Jharkhand at 61.90 per cent. Maharashtra has recorded the lowest turnout so far at 48.66 per cent.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged voters across 49 seats to "vote in record numbers". "I specially call upon women voters and young voters to exercise their franchise," he tweeted.

Here are the latest developments in 5th phase of Lok Sabha elections 2024:

  • Scattered incidents of violence marred the fifth phase of polls in Bengal. Though the Election Commission said the voting was smooth, it received over 1,000 complaints till 11 am alleging EVM malfunctioning and agents being stopped from entering booths.

  • In Arambagh seat, clashes erupted between Trinamool Congress and BJP supporters, and two live crude bombs were also recovered from the area. Meanwhile, in Hooghly seat, BJP sitting MP and candidate Locket Chatterjee faced protests and sloganeering from Trinamool Congress activists led by party MLA Ashima Patra. The activists used 'thief' slogans on Chatterjee, triggering her to counter. A massive contingent of police and central forces went to the spot to control the situation.

  • BJP MP and candidate from Bengal's Barrackpore, Arjun Singh, alleged on Monday that the Trinamool Congress pick, Partha Bhowmick, from the constituency "distributed money last night" with the aim of facilitating "hooliganism". "We will try to have peaceful elections but if that doesn't happen, the government would be responsible for it," Singh told news agency ANI.

  • An argument also erupted between Arjun Singh and a Trinamool Congress worker, with the BJP candidate alleging that the ruling party workers were not allowing people to come out of their houses to cast their votes. Later, Singh told media that women voters were being stopped and claimed the police weren't doing anything.

    "There is this man named Boney who is scaring people and not allowing them to come out of their homes. People are being stopped from voting. I have complained about this to the State Election Commission," Arjun Singh said.

  • Several Bollywood celebrities and other prominent personalities were pictured casting their votes in Mumbai where polling is underway, including actor Akshay Kumar, Shiv Sena pick Govinda, actor-filmmaker Farhan Akhtar, and Reliance Group chairman and MD Anil Ambani, among others. Star couple Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone also cast their vote.

  • BJP's Amethi candidate Smriti Irani appealed to people to cast their votes after doing her bit in Gauriganj, Uttar Pradesh. She urged voters to "exercise your right to vote for strong law and order at the local level, prosperity and progress of the area", news agency ANI reported.

  • BJP's Mumbai North Lok Sabha candidate Piyush Goyal cast his votes and urged everyone to participate in the "festival of democracy". Meanwhile, BSP supremo Mayawati cast her vote in Lucknow and said she is "hopeful of a change (in power)" this time. Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah took a dig at the BJP-led Centre after casting his vote, saying claims like there has been a tourist influx in the Valley due to normalcy is "not good".

  • A total of 695 candidates, including 82 women, are in the fray for the 49 seats going to the polls. Concerned about the low turnout in the previous four phases, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has called upon voters to vote in greater numbers.

  • Of the 49 seats in polls today, 13 are in Maharashtra, 14 in Uttar Pradesh, seven in Bengal, five each in Bihar and Odisha, three in Jharkhand, and one each in Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.

  • Union Ministers Piyush Goyal (Mumbai North), Rajnath Singh (Lucknow), Smriti Irani (Amethi), Chirag Paswan (Hajipur), BJP's Locket Chatterjee (Hooghly), BJD President and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah (Baramulla), and Congress's Tsering Namgyal, among others, are some of the prominent candidates in the fifth phase of the Lok Sabha polls.

Source: India Today

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