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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Thursday, 20 June 2024 7.49 AM IST

Third phase begins, Narendra Modi casts vote, huge crowd cheers for PM

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AHMEDABAD: Prime Minister Narendra Modi cast his vote during the third phase of the Lok Sabha elections. Modi cast his vote in the morning at the polling booth of The Nishan Higher Secondary School in Ahmedabad. Home Minister Amit Shah received Modi who reached the polling booth at 7.30 am. A large crowd lined up on both sides of the road to meet the Prime Minister and cheered for him.


1,300 candidates, including 120 women, are seeking the mandate. Polling is held in 94 constituencies across 10 states and Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir, Dadar, Nagarhaveli-Daman Diu. This includes Madhya Pradesh's Betul constituency, where voting in the second phase was postponed after the candidate died.


The BJP candidate was elected unopposed in Gujarat's Surat, where polling was supposed to be held today. The third phase of polling is in the midst of the BJP's moves to polarize the Hindu votes, the opposition's objections and the sex controversy in Karnataka. The sexual allegations against JDS leader Prajwal Revanna have put ally BJP on the defensive in Karnataka. In 2019, the BJP had swept all 14 seats where voting is going on today.


The campaign also saw Prime Minister Narendra Modi defending Congress' caste reservation as a 'property grab'. The opposition used the Prime Minister's remarks against the Muslim community as a weapon. The Congress focused on issues like social justice, unemployment and justice for farmers.


The Election Commission had expressed concern over the low turnout in the first two phases. It is estimated that the heavy heat is turning away the voters. The polling was 66.14 percent in 102 seats in the first phase and 66.71 percent in 88 seats in the second phase.


Polling constituencies
Gujarat (25), Karnataka (14), Maharashtra (11), Uttar Pradesh (10), Madhya Pradesh (9), Chhattisgarh (7), Bihar (5), Assam (4), West Bengal (4), Goa (2), Dadra Nagar Haveli, Daman Diu (2), Jammu Kashmir (1).


Main battle
Sharad Pawar's daughter Supriya Sule and Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar's wife Sunetra Pawar are clashing in Baramati, Maharashtra. In Uttar Pradesh, Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav's wife Dimple Yadav and BJP's Jaiveer Singh are in a head-to-head battle to retain Mainpuri, former chief minister late Mulayam Singh Yadav's constituency.

Other notables seeking mandate
BJP- Amit Shah (Gandhinagar, Gujarat), Jyotiraditya Scindia (Guna, Madhya Pradesh), Shivraj Singh Chauhan (Vidisha, Madhya Pradesh), Prahlad Joshi (Dharwad, Karnataka), Jagadish Shettar (Belgum, Karnataka), B Y Raghavendra (Shivamoga, Karnataka)

Congress- Digvijaya Singh (Rajgarh, Madhya Pradesh), Geeta Sivarajakumar (Shivamoga, Karnataka)

CPM- Muhammad Saleem

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TAGS: THIRD PHASE BEGINS, MODI, CASTS VOTE, HUGE CROWD, CHEERS, PM
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