Over 1,200 candidates, including Rahul, Hema, in fray in phase 2 of LS polls on Friday

As many as 1,202 candidates, including prominent faces such as Rahul Gandhi, Om Birla and Hema Malini, will try their electoral luck in phase two of the Lok Sabha elections on Friday.
Polling officials carrying election material leave for their respective booths on the eve of the second phase of Lok Sabha elections, in Bengaluru, Thursday, April 25, 2024.
Polling officials carrying election material leave for their respective booths on the eve of the second phase of Lok Sabha elections, in Bengaluru, Thursday, April 25, 2024.

New Delhi | As many as 1,202 candidates, including prominent faces such as Rahul Gandhi, Om Birla and Hema Malini, will try their electoral luck in phase two of the Lok Sabha elections on Friday.

Polling is scheduled from 7 am in 88 constituencies across 13 states and Union territories in this phase.

The remaining five phases of the polls will continue till June 1, with counting of votes scheduled on June 4.

More than 16 lakh polling officials have been deployed across 1.67 lakh polling stations for over 15.88 crore voters, the Election Commission (EC) said.

Voters include 8.08 crore male, 7.8 crore female and 5,929 third gender electors. As many as 34.8 lakh first-time voters are registered to cast their votes. Additionally, there are 3.28 crore young voters in the age group of 20-29 years, the poll authority said.

Voter awareness and facilitation measures have been further geared up for higher turnout this time.

Keeping in mind the heatwave, the EC has extended polling time in several polling stations of four constituencies in Bihar.

Polling for the Betul seat in Madhya Pradesh has been rescheduled to the third phase due to the death of a candidate from the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).

Of the 1,202 candidates in the fray, 1,098 are men, 102 are women and two are from the third gender category.

At least three helicopters, four special trains and nearly 80,000 vehicles have been deployed to ferry poll and security personnel.

Webcasting will be done in more than 50 per cent of the polling stations, along with the deployment of micro-observers in all polling stations.

Polling stations in all states and UTs, except Bihar and Kerala, have less than 1,000 average electors. In Bihar, the average number of voters per polling station is is 1,008, while it is 1,102 in Kerala.

Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Shashi Tharoor, and actor-turned-politician Arun Govil are among the key candidates in the fray for the second phase of the Lok Sabha polls with the BJP's Hema Malini, Om Birla and Gajendra Singh Shekhawat seeking a hat-trick of wins from their respective constituencies.

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