Battle for UP: Polling begins for third phase

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The third phase of polling in 59 assembly constituencies, spread across 16 districts in Uttar Pradesh began here on Sunday morning.

Over 2.15 crore people will decide the fate of 627 candidates.

Districts where polling will be held are Hathras, Firozabad, Etah, Kasganj, Mainpuri, Farrukhabad, Kannauj, Etawah, Aurraiya, Kanpur Dehat, Kanpur Nagar, Jalaun, Jhansi, Lalitpur, Hamirpur and Mahoba.

The third phase of elections is seemingly the most interesting phase of the seven-phase polls.

The Karhal assembly seat, from where Samajwadi Party chief and former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav is contesting, is among the constituencies where polling is being held on Sunday.

The BJP has fielded union minister SP Singh Baghel from the seat.

Polling on Sunday will also seal the fate of the Samajwadi Party chief’s uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav, who is contesting from his traditional Jaswantnagar seat.

In the 2017 elections, the BJP won 49 of the 59 seats while the SP settled for nine. The Congress got one seat, while the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) drew a blank.

The Samajwadi Party hopes to regain lost ground in this Yadav belt. The party had suffered major reverses in 2017, mainly due to the split in the family and party, following the Akhilesh and Shivpal tiff.

The BJP is working to retain it seats in this phase while the BSP hopes to open its account this time.

This phase has witnessed a high pitch campaign with all political parties bringing maximum leaders and holding an unusually high number of rallies, road shows and meetings.

The counting of votes will take place on March 10.

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