The seventh and last phase of the 2019 Lok Sabha election today sees some key constituencies go to polls, the most important of which is Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency – Varanasi.
Some of the other significant seats include Gorakhpur, which was formerly UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s seat, Patna Sahib in Bihar, where Congress’s Shatrughan Sinha is up against BJP’s Ravi Shankar Prasad, and Diamond Harbour and Kolkata in West Bengal.
Voting is taking place in 59 constituencies across seven states and one union territory in the last phase of elections today.
The counting of votes will happen on Thursday, May 23, and the results will be declared the same day.
Polling will be held in Maharajganj, Gorakhpur, Kushinagar, Deoria, Bansgaon (SC), Ghosi, Salempur, Ballia, Ghazipur, Chandauli, Varanasi, Mirzapur and Robertsganj (SC).
Union minister Manoj Sinha and Uttar Pradesh BJP chief Mahendra Nath Pandey are seeking re-election from Ghazipur and Chandauli, respectively.
The BJP is contesting 11 Lok Sabha seats in this phase, while its ally the Apna Dal (Sonelal) is contesting from Mirzapur, currently held by union minister Anupriya Patel, and Robertsganj.
The saffron party has pitted Bhojpuri actor Ravi Kishan from Gorakhpur against the Congress’s Madhusudan Tripathi and Rambhual Nishad of the Samajwadi Party.
Gorakhpur MP Pravin Nishad, who had won the seat on an SP ticket in by-polls last year, has joined the BJP. The party has fielded him from Sant Kabir Nagar seat.
Gorakhpur was represented by Yogi Adityanath in the Lok Sabha from 1998 to 2017, before he became the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh.
The electioneering saw Priyanka holding two back-to-back roadshows in Kushinagar and Mirzapur during the day and union minister Smriti Irani riding a scooty in Gorakhpur.
The final phase of the Lok Sabha polls in the state will also decide the fate of eight SP and five BSP candidates. In all, there are 167 candidates in the fray for the 13 seats.
The highest number of 26 candidates in the fray are from Varanasi, while Bansgaon has the least number of four candidates fighting the polls.
Over 2.32 crore voters are expected to exercise their franchise in this phase in UP. As many as 25,874 polling booths have been set up in 13,979 polling centres in the final phase, the Election Commission said.