STAFF REPORTER GUWAHATI, April 17 - The stage is set for the second phase of Lok Sabha elections with polling to take place in five constituencies of the State tomorrow. The five constituencies that will go to the polls in the second phase are Karimganj, Silchar, Autonomous District (Diphu), Nagaon and Mangaldoi.
Polling officials with EVMs and VVPATs proceeding towards polling centres ahead of the second phase of parliamentary elections in Mangaldoi on Wednesday. – UB Photos
All arrangements have been put in place for smooth conduct of the polls, Election Commission officials said, adding, polling will start at 7 am and continue till 5 pm.
Polling personnel have reached their respective locations of duty and polling teams have started leaving for their allotted points since yesterday morning itself, officials said.
A total of 35,968 polling personnel have been deployed in the five constituencies. There are also 544 micro observers. Altogether, 8,992 sets of EVMs and VVPATs will be used in the second phase.
Meanwhile, security arrangements have been beefed up in view of the polls. A total of 169 companies of security personnel have been deployed in the areas which will vote tomorrow.
Altogether, 50 candidates are in fray in the five constituencies – 14 in Karimganj, 13 in Silchar, 11 in Mangaldoi, seven in Nagaon and five in Diphu.
There are a total of 8,992 polling stations in the constituencies going to the polls tomorrow, including 1,721 in Karimganj, 1,461 in Silchar, 1,174 in Diphu, 2,353 in Mangaldoi and 2,283 in Nagaon.
The total number of electors in the five constituencies is 69,10,592. Of the total, 35,54,460 are male electors, 33,55,952 are female and 180 are from the ‘third gender’.
In Karimganj constituency, there are a total of 13,38,005 electors, including 6,96,638 male, 6,41,349 female and 18 of third gender.
Silchar has 11,91,289 electors, including 6,13,931 male, 5,77,283 female and 75 from third gender.
The size of the electorate in Diphu constituency is 7,95,085, including 4,04,528 male, 3,90,551 female and six from third gender.
Mangaldoi has a total electorate of 17,95,529. They include 9,20,977 male, 8,74,520 female and 32 of third gender.
In Nagaon constituency, there are a total of 17,90,684 electors, including 9,18,386 male, 8,72,249 female and 49 of the third gender.
In the last parliamentary elections held in 2014, the BJP had emerged victorious in Nagaon and Mangaldoi constituencies and the Congress had won from Silchar and Diphu, while the AIUDF had secured the Karimganj seat.
Unlike 2014, this time the BJP has an alliance with the AGP and the BPF, as well as with three other smaller local parties.
As part of the seat-sharing arrangement among the NDA constituents, the BJP has fielded candidates from all the five constituencies going to the polls in the second phase. The Congress party is also in fray in all the five constituencies, while the AIUDF has fielded its own candidate only in Karimganj.
The BJP denied tickets to its sitting MPs in both Nagaon and Mangaldoi and instead opted for ‘new faces’ in those seats.
Similarly, the Congress has also given candidature to new faces (who have no previous experience in the parliamentary battle arena) in Nagaon and Karimganj.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah led the ruling party’s campaign in the five constituencies, while for the Congress the major star campaigners included party president Rahul Gandhi and party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi.