New Delhi: Voting for the fifth phase of the Lok Sabha election concluded, on Monday, covering 51 constituencies spread across seven states, including Jammu & Kashmir’s Pulwama district. This phase saw 63.38 per cent of eligible voters exercising their franchise, according to the Election Commission’s official Voter Turnout app at 11pm. This figure is likely to change as data is still coming in.
With the conclusion of the fifth phase, voting has now taken place in over 78 per cent of the total number of Lok Sabha seats, which is 543.
The Phase 5 of the general election witnessed several incidents of violence in West Bengal and Jammu & Kashmir’s Pulwama district. While there was a grenade attack on a polling booth Pulwama district, violence in West Bengal and snags in EVMs were reported as voters queued up outside booths in the initial hours of polling, on May 6.
In West Bengal, a scuffle broke out between supporters of BJP candidate from Barrackpore seat’s and central forces when Singh tried to enter a booth following allegations that voters were not being allowed to vote, according to an official. Singh said, “Our agents were not allowed inside booths … people were not allowed to vote properly … I went there to see what was going on (as) I have a right to enter booths, but police stopped me … they hit me.”
Singh alleged that the police were not stopping “rigging” in some booths of his constituency and demanded repolling.
Singh was later seen chasing some people in the in Naihati area, who he claimed to be “fake voters”.
Apart from this, there were reports of sporadic violence in the state.
The polling concluded in 14 seats in Uttar Pradesh, 12 in Rajasthan, 7 seats each in West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh, 5 in Bihar and 4 in Jharkhand.
It’s a crucial phase for the Bharatiya Janata Party, which in 2014 had won 39 out of these 51 seats and together with its allies notched up a tally of 41 for the National Democratic Alliance.
Meanwhile, for Trinamool Congress, which won all the seven seats in West Bengal — Bongaon (scheduled caste), Barrackpore, Howrah, Uluberia, Serampore, Hooghly and Arambagh, in 2014, this phase will decide whether the party gets to play a national role post May 23.
In this phase too, West Bengal saw a high turnout of 74.49 per cent. In fact, the state topped the list of the highest turnout in this phase while Jammu & Kashmir witnessed the lowest turnout with just 19.55 per cent of the eligible voters exercising their franchise. However, this low figure was due to a turnout just 2.38 per cent for the Anantnag constituency, where voting took place in three phases for security reasons. The other constituency that went to the poll in the state was Ladakh, which witnessed a turnout of 71.10.
State-wise break-up of voting percentage:
Jammu & Kashmir
For more details about constituencies and phases click here.
Among the big names who were in fray in Phase 5 were:
Rahul Gandhi (Congress/Amethi), Sonia Gandhi (Congress/Rae Bareli), Smriti Irani (BJP/Amethi), Rajnath Singh (BJP/Lucknow), Poonam Sinha (Samajwadi Party/Lucknow), Mehbooba Mufti (PDP/Anantnag), Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore (BJP/Jaipur Rural), Krishna Poonia (Congress/Churu), Rajiv Pratap Rudy (BJP/Saran), Chandrika Rai (RJD/Saran).
Voting for the Phase 6 of the Lok Sabha election will take place on May 12.