India Lok Sabha polls phase-6: voting underway in 58 constituencies


NN Online Report: Amidst sweltering heat, India today began voting in 58 constituencies across six states and two union territories, including Delhi, in the sixth and penultimate phase of polling in the long-drawn parliamentary elections, in which Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking a rare third successive term.

Over 11.13 crore voters — 5.84 crore male and 5.29 crore female– are eligible to exercise their franchise in today’s phase at 1.14 lakh polling stations to choose their representatives from a list of 889 aspirants.

The states and union territories voting in phase six are: Bihar (8 seats), Haryana (all 10 seats), Jammu and Kashmir (1 seat), Jharkhand (4 seats), Delhi (all 7 seats), Odisha (6 seats), Uttar Pradesh (14 seats) and West Bengal (8 seats) when 889 candidates are in fray.

Voting for the 543-member Lok Sabha is being held in seven phases until June 1, with polling for five phases already completed.

The vote counting is scheduled for June 4. The seventh and final round of polling will be held on June 1 across 57 constituencies, including Kolkata.

On completion of the sixth phase, polling will be completed in 486 constituencies.

With large parts of India gripped by a heat wave, the Election Commission has ordered election officials and state machineries to take adequate measures to manage the adverse impact of hot weather on voters.

In West Bengal, voting is being held today in the tribal belt Jangal Mahal region, spanning five districts. A hotspot for identity politics, the region sends eight representatives to Lok Sabha from Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Jhargram, Medinipur, Purulia, Bankura, and Bishnupur seats. Out of the eight seats, the BJP won five and TMC bagged three in the 2019 poll.

In Tamluk, former judge of Calcutta High Court Abhijit Gangopadhyay, whose order as a serving judge on corruption in school staff recruitment put the Mamata Banerjee in a spot, faces TMC’s young turk Debangshu Bhattacharya known for composing the “Khela Hobe” jingle for the party in the 2021 assembly polls.


Today’s phase will include all seven parliamentary seats in the national capital Delhi where the main fight is between BJP and Congress-Aam Aadmi Party alliance. This is the first time the two parties are contesting in alliance in Delhi.

The key candidates in the sixth phase are Dharmendra Pradhan (BJP) from Sambalpur (Odisha), Manoj Tiwari (BJP) and Kanhaiya Kumar (Congress) from North East Delhi, Maneka Gandhi (BJP) from Sultanpur (Uttar Pradesh), Mehbooba Mufti (PDP) from Anantnag-Rajouri (Jammu and Kashmir), Abhijit Gangopadhyay (BJP) from Tamluk (West Bengal) and BJP’s former chief minister of Haryana Manohar Lal Khattar (Karnal).

One of the most watched constituencies is Anantnag-Rajouri parliamentary constituency of Jammu and Kashmir where former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, head of People’s Democratic Party, is in direct battle against National Conference Mian Altaf.

The fate of 162 candidates will be decided in Delhi’s seven seats which were won by BJP in the previous two national elections in 2014 and 2019. Aam Aadmi Party is contesting in four seats and Congress in three.

A key battle to watch out for in the national capital is North East Delhi seat where BJP’s Manoj Tiwari, who is a two-time sitting MP, is up against former firebrand student leader and Congress’s Kanhaiya Kumar.

AAP’s nominee Somnath Bharti faces BJP’s Bansuri Swaraj, daughter of India’s late External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, in New Delhi constituency. Besides them, Delhi Minister Raaj Kumar Anand, who resigned from AAP, has entered the fray on a BSP ticket, making it a triangular contest.

All eyes will also be on the voter turnout in the sixth phase as the same in the previous five phases have been lower than in 2019 national elections, raising concerns that this could hit BJP’s bid for three-fourths majority in the 543-member Lok Sabha.

The fifth phase of the elections, held on May 20, saw a voter turnout of 62.2%, across 49 seats, the lowest in this year’s national elections.