New Delhi: The fate of candidates in 95 constituencies across the country was sealed as the second phase of the Lok Sabha elections ended on Thursday, in which a total of 66 per cent turnout was recorded.
There were reports of an IED blast by the Naxalites in Chhattisgarh.
The highest vote — of 82.76 per cent — was polled in Jalpaiguri constintuency of West Bengal. The lowest — 14.8 per cent — was in J&K’s Srinagar constituency.
Some prominent faces in the fray in the second phase were Union ministers Jitendra Singh, Jual Oram, D.V. Sadananda Gowda and Pon Radhakrishnan; former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda; DMK’s Dayanidhi Maran, A. Raja and Kanimozhi, Congress leaders M. Verappa Moily and Raj Babbar, National Conference president Farooq Abdullah and BJP’s Hema Malini.
Over 15.80 crore voters cast their votes to decide the fate of 1,600 contestants. Voting was also held in 35 Assembly constituencies in Odisha and in 18 Assembly seats in Tamil Nadu.
In Tamil Nadu, polling is being held in 38 of the 39 Lok Sabha seats. Polling in Vellore Lok Sabha seat was cancelled on Tuesday by the Election Commission after the recovery of huge amount of cash allegedly from an associate of a DMK leader recently.
The EC had also announced postponement of polling in Tripura (East) Lok Sabha seat to the third phase on April 23, saying the prevailing law and order situation there was not conducive for the holding of free and fair polls.
In the South, besides Tamil Nadu, polling was being held in 14 seats in Karnataka.
Ten seats went to the hustings in Maharashtra, eight in Uttar Pradesh, five each in Assam, Bihar and Odisha, three each in Chhattisgarh and West Bengal, two in Jammu and Kashmir and one seat each in Manipur and Puducherry.
Of 95 constituencies, the AIADMK holds the maximum of 36 seats, followed by the BJP, with 27 seats.
While the Congress had won 12 of these seats in 2014, the Shiv Sena and the BJD had bagged four each, the JD(S) and the RJD two each and the AIUDF, NCP, JD(U), PDP, AINRC, PMK, CPM and Trinamul Congress one seat each.
The Lok Sabha polls are being held in seven phases for 543 seats....