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Lok Sabha Polls Phase-4 ready to roll

According to the ECI, 1717 candidates are vying for positions of power and representation across the 10 states and union territories.
02:19 AM May 13, 2024 IST | SURINDER SINGH OBEROI
lok sabha polls phase 4 ready to roll
ANI
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New Delhi, May 12: The Election Commission of India (ECI) is all set for the commencement of Phase-4 of the Lok Sabha elections, set to kick off on Monday.

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This phase will witness polling across 96 parliamentary constituencies spanning 10 states and union territories, along with the State Legislative Assembly seats in Andhra Pradesh and a significant portion of Odisha’s seats.

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Additionally, certain assembly segments in Telangana will see extended polling hours to encourage greater voter participation.

May 13 marks a significant date for Kashmir, with the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat slated for polls in the fourth phase, followed by the Baramulla constituency and the Anantnag-Poonch-Rajouri segment in subsequent phases.

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Union Home Secretary A K Bhalla in Srinagar convened a security review meeting, highlighting the importance of security arrangements for these elections.

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Bhalla emphasised the need for confidence-building measures to ensure voter turnout remains unhindered by threats or intimidation.

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The Phase-4 polling is expected to occur under favourable weather conditions, as per IMD forecasts, with no significant concerns regarding hot weather.

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Nevertheless, arrangements have been made at all polling stations to ensure voter convenience, including provisions for water, shelter, and fans.

Thus far, the preceding phases of the Lok Sabha polls have concluded smoothly across 283 parliamentary constituencies and 20 states and UTs, setting the stage for the upcoming phase.

The counting of votes is scheduled for June 4.

“For the fourth phase of the Lok Sabha polls on Monday, nearly all preparations and security issues are concluded to uphold the sanctity of the democratic process,” an ECI official said.

According to the ECI, 1717 candidates are vying for positions of power and representation across the 10 states and union territories.

The logistical challenge of facilitating smooth and orderly polling is one of the main challenges for the ECI.

To address this, the logistical framework has been established, including the execution of 122 sorties to transport both polling and security officials.

Over 19 lakh polling officials have been mobilised to ensure that the voices of 17.7 crore voters are heard loud and clear across 1.92 lakh polling stations.

Special provisions have been made for senior citizens above 80 years of age and Persons with Disabilities (PwD) voters.

The introduction of home voting options for them highlights the fostering of equal participation in the electoral process.

The ECI has deployed 364 observers to exercise vigilant oversight, ensuring adherence to electoral norms and ethical conduct.

There is also an extensive surveillance apparatus to deter any attempts at voter inducement or malpractice.

The ECI has also prioritised the provision of essential facilities at polling stations to enhance the voter experience and participation.

From voter information slips distributed to all registered voters to alternative documents permitted for identity verification to eliminate as many barriers as possible to increase participation as the last three phases have seen marginally less voting and participation.

Live voter turnout data will be accessible via the voter turnout app, enabling real-time monitoring of voter engagement and facilitating informed decision-making.

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