Stage is set for the second phase of polling in Uttar Pradesh and for the 69 of 70 Assembly seats in the hill state of Uttarakhand. Elaborate security arrangements have been made in both the states for smooth conduct of pollings, officials said.
* Uttar Pradesh: 65.5 per cent voter turnout recorded till 5 pm
* Uttarakhand: 68 per cent voter turnout recorded till 5 pm
* Uttar Pradesh: Nearly 60 pc voting recorded till 4 pm
* Uttar Pradesh: 54.27 percent voter turnout recorded till 3 pm in second phase of polling
* Uttarakhand: 53% voter turnout recorded till 3 pm
* Uttar Pradesh: 53.15 per cent of electorate cast their votes till 3 pm
* Uttar Pradesh: Over 45 per cent turnout of voters recorded till 2 PM
* Uttarakhand: Around 40 per cent of the electorate have exercised their franchise by 1 pm
* Uttar Pradesh: Over 42 pc voter turnout till 1 pm
* Uttar Pradesh: Over 25 per cent of electorate cast their votes till noon
* Uttarakhand: 22% voter turnout recorded till 11 AM
* Uttar Pradesh: 24.14 per cent voter turnout recorded till 11 am
I appeal to people to venture out in large numbers and vote. Karo vote par chot, mitao prajatantra ka khot (vote for clean democracy), this is what I say to people," the yoga guru told reporters here after casting his vote: Ramdev
* Uttarakhand: 6 per cent polling recorded till 9 am
* Uttar Pradesh: 10.75 per cent voter turnout recorded till 9 am
* Uttarakhand: Voting for 69 of a total of 70 assembly seats barring Karnaprayag begins.
उत्तराखंड में आज मतदान का दिन है। सभी मतदाताओं से अनुरोध है कि वे अपने मत का प्रयोग करें और लोकतंत्र के इस उत्सव के साझेदार बनें।— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) February 15, 2017
* Uttar Pradesh: Former Union minister Jitin Prasada casts his vote at polling booth no. 162 at Shahjahanpur
* Uttar Pradesh: Voting process which had been halted at Badaun Sadar constituency's SK Inter College-booth no. 183, now resumes.
* Uttar Pradesh: Glitch in EVM machine halts voting process at Badaun Sadar constituency's SK Inter College-booth no. 183.
* Uttar Pradesh: Polling begins for 67 Assembly constituencies of Uttar Pradesh in the second of seven phases
उत्तर प्रदेश में आज दूसरे चरण का मतदान है। मेरी विनती है कि सभी मतदाता लोकतंत्र के इस पावन उत्सव में भाग लें और भारी संख्या में मतदान करें।— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) February 15, 2017
In Uttar Pradesh, voting to be held in 67 assembly constituencies spread across 11 districts -- Sambhal, Moradabad, Rampur, Bareilly, Amroha, Pilibhit, Lakhimpur Kheri, Shahjahanpur, Bijnore, Saharanpur and Budayun.
A total of 721 candidates are in the fray. Of the 2.28 crore voters, 1.23 crore are males. The maximum number of 28 candidates are in Kanth constituency and the least in Dhanaura which has five candidates. There are 82 women in the fray.
The stakes in this round are the highest for the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP), which had done well in many of these constituencies in 2012 elections. The party is facing a tough challenge to maintain its lead with the BJP and BSP raising their pitch on a number of issues including the law and order situation in the state.
The SP holds 34 of the 67 seats and had finished second in 18 others in 2012 polls. The Congress had won four and finished second in eight. The two parties are contesting the election in alliance. The BSP had won 17 and finished second in 22 others while the BJP 10 and finished second in 15. Smaller outfits such as the Peace Party and Ittehadul-E-Millat Council had won one seat each in 2012.
In some districts, including Rampur, Moradabad, Badayun and Bijnor, Muslim population is around 40 per cent. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi and BSP chief Mayawati campaigned extensively for this phase of polls.
The fate of Uttar Pradesh Minister Mohammad Azam Khan, his son Abdullah Azam and ministers Iqbal Masood, Haji Riiyaz Ahmad, Mehboob Ali, Ram Moorti Verma, Kamal Akhtar and Mool Chandra Chauhan besides Congress leader Jiten Prasada will be decided on Wednesday.
While the BJP and BSP are fighting on all 67 second phase seats, the SP is contesting 51 seats and Congress 18 and Rashtriya Lok Dal 53. Nationalist Congress Party, Communist Party of India-Marxist and the Communist Party of India have also put up their candidates. There are 207 independents.
The staggered battle for the Uttar Pradesh assembly began on February 11 when 73 constituencies went to the polls. The first phase recorded 64.22 per cent voter turn out which was better than 59.60 percent in 2012 and 45.96 percent in 2007.
Stakes are high for both the ruling Congress and the BJP in the crucial assembly polls. A total of 628 candidates from different parties and independent backgrounds are trying their luck this time. A total of 10,685 polling booths have been made for the 75,13,547 voters.
Voting in the Karnaprayag seat has been postponed to March 9 as the BSP candidate Kuldeep Kanvasi died in an accident during canvassing. On request of the party leadership, the poll panel decided to hold the elections on March 9. The BSP has been given time till February 20 to file a fresh nomination, scrutiny would be done of February 21 and date of withdrawal is February 21.
The Congress and the BJP are locked in a straight contest in most of the seats but the presence of about a dozen rebel candidates in the fray as independents and the saffron party fielding former Congressmen may upset the calculations.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi held two public meetings in Rishikesh and Someshwar besides a 75-km road show in Haridwar district which has the maximum number of 11 constituencies in Uttarakhand.
Chief Minister Harish Rawat has gone all out to woo voters by holding several public meetings and road shows on daily basis in perhaps the most crucial election of his career.
A total of 30,000 security personnel including 105 companies of central armed police force, 25 companies of Provincial Armed Constabulary, Uttarakhand police and the homeguards have been deployed. For the first time voter verified paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines will be used in these elections in Uttarakhand.