UP elections 2017: 61.16 pc turnout in phase 3, EC says voting by and large peaceful

The voter percentage in the first and second phase of the Uttar Pradesh election have been recorded at 64.2 and 66 per cent respectively.

UP elections 2017: 61.16 pc turnout in phase 3, EC says voting by and large peaceful

As the third phase of Uttar Pradesh polls nears an end, 61.16 per cent voter turnout was reportedly recorded in the state, with Election Commission saying it expects the turnout to cross 63 per cent.



In the third phase of Uttar Pradesh polls, voting took place in 12 districts for 69 assembly constituencies.  The 12 districts where polling is underway are Farrukhabad, Mainpuri, Etawah, Hardoi, Kannauj, Kanpur rural, Kanpur city, Unnao, Lucknow, Barabanki, Auraiyya and Sitapur. More than 2.4 crore people are expected to vote today to decide between 826 candidates.

U.P. CEO T. Venkatesh said the polling was held by and large peacefully in this phase amid tight security arrangements.





The voting today is in Samajwadi Party's strongholds, and the most keenly watched contest being Lucknow Cantt where SP patriarch Mulayam Singh's 'choti bahu' Aparna Yadav is taking on sitting legislator Rita Bhaguna Joshi, who had won in 2012 for Congress, but switched over and is now fighting on a BJP ticket.

A bitter settlement in the Yadav family feud which ended with Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav taking over the reins of Samajwadi Party from his father Mulayam Singh will also be a key factor in determining if the first family retains its strongholds.

It's a three-cornered contest in Uttar Pradesh after Akhilesh Yadav, 43, leading the Samajwadi Party teamed up with the Congress spearheaded by Rahul Gandhi, against the BJP and four-time chief minister Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party. In 2012 elections, Samajwadi Party had won 55 of the 69 constituencies.

The BJP has not projected a chief ministerial candidate for the UP elections and has built its campaign around PM Modi's appeal. In his campaign, PM Modi has said that in banning 500 and 1,000 rupee notes, a move aimed at eliminating black or undeclared money, he had the interests of the poor at heart. A strong showing in UP, country's most populous state, would strengthen his chances of a second term in 2019.

The voter percentage in the first and second phase of the Uttar Pradesh election have been recorded at 64.2 and 66 per cent respectively.

Uttar Pradesh assembly elections are being conducted in seven phases. The votes will be counted on March 11.