Lok Sabha elections 2024 updates | Bengal govt appoints Vivek Sahay as new DGP of the State

The Election Commission of India orders removal of Home Secretaries of Gujarat, U.P., Bihar, Jharkhand, H.P., Uttarakhand who are holding charges in CM offices, say sources

March 18, 2024 09:41 am | Updated March 19, 2024 01:21 pm IST

Vivek Sahay, IPS.

Vivek Sahay, IPS. | Photo Credit: X@UNPOL

Amidst the electoral bonds scam, the BJP’s call for simultaneous polls, and campaigning from several political parties, India will go to the polls from April 19 to June 1, in a marathon seven-phase exercise to elect the 543 members of the 18th Lok Sabha.

Assembly elections will be held simultaneously in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Sikkim, and Arunachal Pradesh. 

Also read: Lok Sabha elections 2024 LIVE updates: March 19

Click here for the full schedule

While Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said Prime Minister Narendra Modi could not win the Lok Sabha elections without EVMs, the ED, the CBI and the Income Tax Department, Mr. Modi at the Union Cabinet meeting on March 18, asked his ministerial colleagues to prepare a draft roadmap for the first 100 days and the next five years for the new government. 

Here are the latest updates on the elections:

  • March 18, 2024 21:44
    Opposition asks EC to act against PM’s Whatsapp message on ‘Viksit Bharat’

    Raising the issue of people receiving Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s letter on WhatsApp seeking support in building a ‘Viksit Bharat’, opposition leaders on Monday called on the Election Commission to act against what they said was a “blatant violation” of the model code of conduct.

    Congress MP Shashi Tharoor tagged a post of a person raising the issue of privacy over the prime minister’s letter being received by persons living abroad.

    “Will the @ECISVEEP take note of such a blatant misuse of government machinery and government data to serve the partisan political interests of the ruling party?” Tharoor said on X.

    Another Congress MP Manish Tewari also posted on X the WhatsApp message which had the letter attached, as received by him on his phone.

    “This unsolicited WhatsApp message came at 12.09 AM today . It seems to be from @GoI_MeitY (Ministry of Electronics & IT). Is this not a blatant violation of the both Model Code of Conduct & Right to Privacy,” Tewari said.


  • March 18, 2024 21:24
    PMK decides to go with BJP in LS polls, says party general secretary

    Ending days of suspense on the alliance, the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) on Monday announced that it has decided to go with the BJP in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

    The party would firm up electoral ties with the BJP-led NDA and a formal announcement on the number of Lok Sabha constituencies and the candidates to be fielded would be made by PMK founder Dr S Ramadoss, PMK general secretary Vadivel Ravanan said.

    The Vanniyar community-dominated party’s announcement coincided with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s roadshow in Coimbatore and it sent a clear message to the AIADMK that the PMK was not keen on forging poll ties with the Dravidian major.

    AIADMK general secretary Edappadi K Palaniswami, who had walked out of the NDA, has been attempting to stitch an alliance with the PMK and the DMDK.


  • March 18, 2024 21:17
    Former Congress MLA, several leaders join BJP in Rajasthan

    Several leaders, including a former Congress MLA, joined the BJP in Rajasthan on Monday.

    The leaders joined the party in the presence of Arun Chaturvedi, the BJP’s former state unit president, and Jogeshwar Garg, its chief whip in the assembly.

    Ramlal Meghwal, a former Congress MLA from Jalore, Dr Vikram Singh Gurjar, who had contested assembly elections from Deoli-Uniara on a Rashtriya Loktantrik Party ticket, and others took membership of the BJP, the party said in a statement.

    Chaturvedi said the life of the common man has become easier during the 10 years of “good governance” of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Hundreds of public welfare schemes are being run to uplift the marginalised sections.


  • March 18, 2024 21:05
    BJP to reach out to Delhi voters for LS polls through 10K social media workers

    In the wake of the Lok Sabha polls, the BJP’s Delhi unit has planned to deploy around 10,000 social media experts, including party workers, to ensure the candidates on each of the seven parliamentary seats in the city have maximum voter outreach, party leaders on Monday said.

    This time the concept of “360 degree digital media campaign” is being adopted by several BJP candidates, including Manoj Tiwari contesting from North East Delhi seat, to reach out to the voters in a targeted fashion, they said.

    The party’s social media campaign will be different this time as content material like videos, sound bytes will be created by numerous teams through actual field visit rather than processing the pre-recorded visuals, said Delhi BJP social media head Rohit Upadhyay.


  • March 18, 2024 20:53
    Those trying to lure voters through bribery, other means to face strict action: Hamirpur DC

    Strict action will be taken against those trying to lure voters through bribery or other inducements during the Lok Sabha polls, said Deputy Commissioner Hamirpur Amarjeet Singh on Monday.

    He said flying squads have been formed to keep vigil on anti-social elements and a monitoring cell has been set up at the district level to receive complaints against these people.

    Hamirpur Deputy Commissioner Singh, who is also the District Election Officer, said that those found guilty of giving bribes or other inducement during the election process can be punished with imprisonment up to one year and a fine.

    As many as 1,784 polling stations would be set up in the district, he said.


  • March 18, 2024 20:52
    AIMIM renominates its Lok Sabha MP Jaleel from Aurangabad in Maharashtra

    The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) on Monday announced the candidature of its Lok Sabha MP Imtiaz Jaleel from central Maharashtra’s Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar (earlier Aurangabad), the seat he won in 2019.

    Jaleel, who is also the Maharashtra unit president of the Hyderabad-based party, was keen to contest from one of the Lok Sabha constituencies in Mumbai, but AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi renominated the journalist-turned-politician from his current seat which will go to polls on May 13 in phase four.

    Owaisi took to social media platform X to announce Jaleel’s candidature and said he will contest from Aurangabad (now called Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar).

    The Hyderabad Lok Sabha MP also announced the candidature of AIMIM leader Akhtarul Iman from the Kishanganj parliamentary seat in Bihar.


  • March 18, 2024 20:18
    BRS seeks disqualification of party MLA who joined Congress in Telangana

    The BRS on Monday urged Telangana Legislative Assembly Speaker Gaddam Prasad Kumar to disqualify BRS MLA Danam Nagender who joined the ruling Congress.

    A delegation of BRS MLAs met the Speaker at his residence and submitted a petition seeking the disqualification of Danam Nagender, MLA from Khairatabad here.

    Nagender had joined the Congress in the presence of Chief Minister and state Congress president A Revanth Reddy and AICC in-charge of party affairs in Telangana Deepa Dasmunshi here on Sunday.

    Some of the BRS’s sitting Lok Sabha members have quit the party in recent weeks.


  • March 18, 2024 20:01
    What did you do for Delhi in 5 years? AAP leader asks BJP MPs, demands white paper

    The Aam Aadmi Party on Monday asked the BJP what its MPs had done in the last 10 years for the national capital and dared them to release a white paper on it.

    BJP candidates for seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi on Monday listed out their 100 days “priorities,” which included improving health and education facilities once they get elected.

    Addressing a press conference, Delhi cabinet minister Saurabh Bharadwaj said, “Where were the MPs in the last 10 years when they were needed in Delhi? They must put forth a white paper before Delhiites.” Bharadwaj posed seven questions to the BJP MPs, all but one of whom have been replaced for the coming fray.


  • March 18, 2024 19:35
    75 companies of central paramilitary forces deployed for Arunachal polls: CEO

    The Election Commission has deployed 75 companies of Central Paramilitary Forces to conduct free and fair simultaneous Lok Sabha and assembly polls in Arunachal Pradesh, a senior election official said on Monday.

    In addition, the available police force in the state would also be pressed into service for election duties, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Pawan Kumar Sain told reporters here.

    He said the CPMF companies (a company comprises around 100 personnel) have been deployed in all the districts of the state, and they have started the area dominance exercise in various critical and vulnerable polling stations.


  • March 18, 2024 19:17
    Assam’s ruling BJP-led coalition to approach voters on development agenda

    The ruling BJP-led coalition in Assam will approach voters in the state on the basis of its developmental activities.

    BJP state president Bhabesh Kalita and Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) chief Atul Bora said they have also developed a joint roadmap to take forward the electioneering process in the state.

    “The alliance partners have already been working on to reach out to the people. Today, we discussed joint strategies to take it forward,” Bora said at a joint press after a meeting between the two parties.

    Bora, a cabinet minister, said joint committees for coordination at different levels between the two parties are also being formed.

    “People are already aware of the ‘vikas yatra’ (journey of development) of our government. Our candidates have good potential to win all seats,” Bora added.


  • March 18, 2024 18:54
    CPI nominates sitting MP Subbarayan from Tiruppur in TN

    The Communist Party of India (CPI), which is contesting the Lok Sabha elections as part of the DMK-led alliance in Tamil Nadu, on Monday nominated Tiruppur sitting MP K Subbarayan again, to seek the people’s mandate from his home constituency.

    The party has also fielded Y Selvaraj to contest from the Nagapattinam Lok Sabha constituency, CPI national secretary K Narayana announced at the end of the two-day meeting here.

    Meanwhile, Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) chief Vaiko, another ally of the DMK, announced that his son Durai Vaiko will contest from Tiruchirappalli seat allotted to it by the DMK.

    Durai, who was elevated to the post of chief secretary of MDMK, will make a debut from Tiruchirappalli constituency, which has returned MDMK, AIADMK and the Congress in the past.


  • March 18, 2024 18:46
    Former RJD leader Lovely Anand joins JD(U)

    Lovely Anand, former Lok Sabha MP from Bihar’s Vaishali, joined Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) here on Monday.

    Anand, a former RJD leader, joined the party at a function here in the presence of JD(U)‘s former national president Rajiv Ranjan Singh ‘Lalan’. Several senior leaders of the party were also present on the occasion.

    “For me, it is like a homecoming. Whatever responsibilities the party gives me, I will deliver my best”, Anand said soon after joining JD(U).

    Anand is the wife of former MP Anand Mohan, who was released from jail last year after serving 15 years of imprisonment in a murder case.


  • March 18, 2024 18:36
    AAP govt ‘failed’ to deliver on its poll promises, says Union Minister Lekhi

    The Aam Aadmi Party government in Punjab has “failed” to deliver on its poll promises, Union Minister Meenakashi Lekhi said on Monday and claimed that the party was facing difficulty in fielding new faces in the 13 Lok Sabha seats in the state.

    “All development projects being executed in the state are funded by the Union government and were started much before the AAP came to power in the state,” she said.

    The project to clean ‘Budha Nallah’ in Ludhiana city has become a “gold mine” for some. Crore of rupees have been spent but things have not changed on the ground, she charged.

    Taking a dig at the AAP, Lekhi said that despite being in power in Punjab, the party was facing difficulty in finding new faces for the 13 Lok Sabha seats in the state.


  • March 18, 2024 18:25
    BJP, allies will sweep Northeast in LS polls: Sonowal

    Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Monday said the BJP-led NDA will sweep the Lok Sabha elections in the Northeast and win more than 23 seats out of 25 in the region.

    He said people of the region will again repose faith on the ruling alliance due to the development activities undertaken in the region over the last 10 years.

    “The mood is in favour of BJP and its allies because under the leadership of Narendra Modi ji, there has been tremendous development in the last 10 years,” Sonowal told reporters at the state party headquarters here, his first visit since being named the BJP’s candidate from Dibrugrah Lok Sabha constituency.


  • March 18, 2024 18:08
    Over 60,000 cops, 145 CAPF companies to man security during LS polls in T’gana: CEO Vikas Raj

    Over 60,000 police personnel besides 145 companies of Central Armed Police Forces will be deployed for the smooth conduct of upcoming Lok Sabha polls in Telangana, Chief Electoral Officer Vikas Raj said on Monday.

    The CEO, in a media briefing, said Telangana has 3.30 crore voters including over 1.94 lakh electors above 85 years of age, and after the assembly polls in November last year, nearly 12.50 lakh new voters have been enrolled while 8.58 lakh names were deleted. The net addition of voters stands at four lakh.

    About 1.80 lakh staff are required in polling stations and over 25,000 people will be deployed for other duties in addition to 40,000 Booth Level Officers and supervisors, he said.

    As many as 57,000 ballot units, 44,500 control units, 48,000 VVPAT machines are required for the polls, he said and added that the FLC (first level check) was done for all the machines in the presence of political parties.


  • March 18, 2024 17:53
    J’khand DGP holds meeting with five states to ensure free, fair LS polls

    Security has been tightened in Jharkhand especially along the state’s border with West Bengal, Bihar, Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, a senior police officer said on Monday.

    DGP Ajay Kumar Singh chaired an inter-state virtual co-ordination meeting with senior police officials from neighboring states to ensure fair elections.

    Discussions during the meeting covered various topics, including intelligence sharing, naxal activities, and coordination to address inter-state criminal activities.

    Additionally, emphasis was placed on activating the checkposts along the borders to curb influx of illegal weapons, arms, ammunition, liquor, and narcotics.

    The DGP mentioned that a list of interstate criminals has been shared with the respective states to facilitate necessary action.


  • March 18, 2024 17:33
    Bengal govt appoints Vivek Sahay as new DGP

    On the instruction of Election Commission of India, the West Bengal government has appointed Vivek Sahay as the new DGP of the State with immediate effect.

  • March 18, 2024 17:23
    Seat sharing finalised in Bihar for NDA

    BJP will contest in 17 seats, JD-U 16, Lok Jan Shakti Party (Ram Vilas) will contest in five and Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) and Rashtriya Lok Morcha of Upendra Kushwaha will contest one seat each, State in charge of BJP Vinod Tewde announces in Delhi.

  • March 18, 2024 17:16
    Polls to decide if country will be run by ‘Asuri Shakti’ or ‘Daivik Shakti’: Cong slams PM Modi

    The Congress hit back at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his remark that the INDIA bloc’s manifesto talks about finishing ‘Shakti’, saying the elections will decide whether the country would be run by ‘Asuri Shakti’ (demonic power) or ‘Daivik Shakti’ (divine power).

    A day after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, at a rally in Mumbai, commented that the “fight against Modi is not on a personal level since Modi is a ‘mask’ who works for a ‘Shakti’ (power)“, the prime minister asserted that the fight is between those who want to destroy ‘Shakti’ and those who worship it.

    “The prime minister is upset and the entire BJP is talking baseless things after Rahul Gandhi attacked ‘Asuri Shakti’. This election is between ‘Asuri Shakti’ and ‘Daivik Shakti’,” Congress national spokesperson Pawan Khera said.


  • March 18, 2024 16:54
    BSP MP Sangeeta Azad joins BJP

    BSP MP Sangeeta Azad, who represents Lalganj seat from Uttar Pradesh in the outgoing Lok Sabha, joined the BJP in the presence of several senior leaders of the ruling party.

    The Dalit leader was inducted into the BJP by its national general secretary Vinod Tawde, Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Brajesh Pathak and state BJP president Bhupendra Singh.

    Lawyer Seema Kushwaha, who has been associated with legal cases involving women victims, also joined the party.


  • March 18, 2024 16:44
    DMK to contest in Coimbatore after a decade

    The ruling DMK is set to field its candidate in the Coimbatore Lok Sabha constituency after a decade. The last time a DMK candidate won this seat was in 1996. After finalising seat-sharing arrangement with its allies on Monday, March 18, 2024 the DMK has retained the three seats in Chennai city and will contest in 17 other constituencies in the Lok Sabha polls 2024.

    Though the Dravidian party contested in 21 constituencies in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, there have been minor changes in the seats this time. The party has decided to enter the fray in Coimbatore, Arani and Theni constituencies, which it had allotted to its allies during the 2019 polls. This time, the DMK has also allotted its sitting constituencies

    Read here
  • March 18, 2024 16:40
    Amid tussle over Baramati seat, Shiv Sena leader Vijay Shivtare meets Shinde

    Days after his unilateral announcement to contest the Lok Sabha election from Baramati seat as an Independent candidate caused a flutter in the Mahayuti alliance, Shiv Sena leader Vijay Shivtare met Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.

    Even as Shinde apparently tried to persuade Shivtare to withdraw from the fray, the latter didn’t give him any assurance.

    Notably, NCP leader and Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar’s wife Sunetra Pawar is most likely to be the candidate from Baramati against her sister-in-law and sitting MP Supriya Sule.

    The BJP, Shiv Sena, and the NCP led by Ajit Pawar are constituents of the Mahayuti combine in Maharashtra.

    “I told Shinde that I have received a huge support of people to contest the Lok Sabha elections against the Pawars,” the former MLA told reporters.


  • March 18, 2024 16:23
    Health, education and women safety among top priorities of BJP in Delhi

    The BJP candidates for seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi listed out their 100 days priorities, including improving health and educational facilities, after being elected as MPs from their respective constituencies.

    Bansuri Swaraj contesting from the New Delhi constituency listed her priorities, including creation of a start up hub and strengthening self help groups of women. She said that desealing of sealed shops will be taken up by her in the first week if she is elected.

    North East Delhi candidate Manoj Tiwari said the Signature bridge was completed in his previous term as the MP and he also brought Metro trains to the area. Tiwari said a beautiful riverfront will be completed in 100 days and work is underway to remove congestion in the area.

    South Delhi candidate Ramvir Bidhuri said that a six lane highway in Badarpur Assembly segment was nearing completion and 70 per cent work in it was done. The roads will be constructed as per the Master Plan to improve traffic situation apart from regularisation of 69 unauthorised colonies in South Delhi, he said citing his priorities.


  • March 18, 2024 15:57
    Complaint against PM Modi for violating MCC by using IAF helicopter in election rally

    Trinamool Congress MP Saket Gokhale on March 18 filed a complaint against Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the Election Commission of India (ECI) for violating the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) for using an Indian Air Force helicopter to attend an election rally in AC 96-Chilakaluripet in Palnadu, Andhra Pradesh, on Sunday.

    Read here

  • March 18, 2024 15:41
    Congress to fight on nine seats in Tamil Nadu; one in Puducherry

    The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) has finalised the seat-sharing talks with the alliance ahead of the 2024 general elections. The Congress is set to contest in nine seats in Tamil Nadu and one in Puducherry, while the ruling DMK will contest on 21 seats.

    In one or two days, the DMK is likely to release the candidates list also. The seats on which Congress will fight in Tamil Nadu are Thiruvallur, Krishnagiri, Karur, Cuddalore, Myladuthurai, Sivagangai, Virudhunagar, Tirunelveli and Kanniyakumari.

    The MDMK, the IUML and the KMDK (DMK symbol) have been given one seat each while the VCK, the CPM, the CPI get two seats each in the Lok Sabha polls. - ANI

  • March 18, 2024 15:28
    BJP MLA dares Congress to field Rahul Gandhi from Indore

    A BJP MLA, who won the Madhya Pradesh Assembly poll last year with the highest vote margin, has dared the Congress to field Rahul Gandhi from Indore seat in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

    The BJP has fielded its sitting MP Shankar Lalwani from the Indore seat, while the Congress has not yet announced its candidate.

    Four-time BJP MLA Ramesh Mendola in a post on X shared a news clip about speculation that State Congress president Jitu Patwari is the first choice of the Opposition party for the Indore Lok Sabha seat.

    “Dear @INC, why are you making poor Jitu Patwari ji a scapegoat? I request you to give a ticket to Rahul ji from Indore in his place. Our Indore is Modi ji’s family. This family will bid farewell to @RahulGandhi ji by gifting him a defeat by a margin of at least 7 lakh votes and yes, this is not arrogance but faith,” Mr. Mendola said. - PTI

  • March 18, 2024 15:16
    Seat-sharing for Bihar will be finalised in two to three days: Tejashwi Yadav

    Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tejashwi Yadav said the seat-sharing for Bihar among the INDIA bloc allies was in the final stages and would be sealed in the next few days.

    The RJD leader, who came here from Mumbai after attending a rally organised by the Opposition INDIA bloc at Shivaji Park on March 17, said most issues had been sorted and there were issues only on one or two seats left.

    “Everything will be decided in two-three days. It is in the final stages. There are some issues over a seat or two, but everything will be sorted out,” Mr. Yadav told reporters here. - PTI

  • March 18, 2024 15:13
    Introduce online voting for senior citizens, physically-challenged persons: Ex-CEC Krishnamurthy

    Former Chief Election Commissioner of India T. S. Krishnamurthy suggested that online voting facility be provided to senior citizens, physically-challenged persons and members of the uniformed services, to start with.

    He also urged political parties to seriously explore the possibility of cutting down the number of physical public meetings and increasingly opt for online campaigning, leveraging the power of digital media.

    He said that during his tenure as the head of the Election Commission of India, the proposal to give online voting options to senior citizens and physically-challenged persons was examined and informal consultations were also held with IIT Madras. - PTI

    Read the whole story here
  • March 18, 2024 14:49
    Congress, TMC allege poll code violation by BJP government in Assam

    Assam Opposition parties Congress and the Trinamool Congress (TMC) have alleged that the State’s BJP-led government has violated the election Model Code of Conduct (MCC) by failing to remove official advertisements featuring the Prime Minister and Chief Minister.

    State Congress president Bhupen Kumar Borah and TMC State chief Ripun Bora have separately written to Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Rajiv Kumar expressing their concerns. While the Congress lodged its complaint on Sunday, the TMC sent the letter on March 18.

    Mr. Borah emphasised that the presence of advertisements with the photographs of the PM, CM and others constitute a “gross violation” of the MCC and urged the CEC to take immediate action.

    The MCC was enforced nationwide after Lok Sabha election schedule was announced on March 16. In Assam, the elections will be held in three phases for its 14 Lok Sabha seats on April 19, 26, and May 7, with counting scheduled for June 4. - PTI

  • March 18, 2024 14:39
    EC orders removal of West Bengal police chief, BMC Commissioners and six Home Secreatries of many States

    The Election Commission (EC) has ordered the removal of Home Secretaries of Gujarat, U.P., Bihar, Jharkhand, H.P., Uttarakhand who are holding charges in Chief Minister’s offices, say sources. 

    The EC has also ordered the removal of West Bengal police chief, the said, adding, it has also ordered the removal of Brihanmumbai Municipal Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal, Additional Commissioners, Deputy Commissioners. — PTI

  • March 18, 2024 14:25
    Madhya Pradesh | Kamal Nath’s close aide, various other State Congress functionaries join BJP

    Ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, a close associate of former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath and some other functionaries of the Opposition Congress joined the ruling BJP on March 18.

    The Bahujan Samaj Party’s (BSP’S) State in-charge also joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

    Syed Zafar, a former Congress spokesperson, joined the BJP in Bhopal in the presence of Chief Minister Mohan Yadav and the party’s state head VD Sharma.

    Mr. Zafar, a native of Chhindwara, was considered a close associate of Congress veteran and former chief minister Kamal Nath.

    As per his profile on X, he was currently holding the post of MP Congress general secretary.

    However, State Congress media department chairman K.K. Mishra said Mr. Zafar was not holding any post in the party at present. — PTI

  • March 18, 2024 13:51
    3.35 crore people eligible to vote in Lok Sabha, Assembly polls in Odisha

    “Around 3.35 crore people, including 1.65 crore women, are eligible to vote in the upcoming Lok Sabha and Assembly polls in Odisha,” an official said on March 18.

    The Lok Sabha and the Assembly elections will be held in four phases between May 13 and June 1. “There will be 37,809 polling stations, including 33,429 in rural areas, in the State,” the election official said.

    “Auxiliary polling stations will also be set up where the number of electors exceeds 1,500,” he said. “The district election officers have been instructed to ensure the availability of minimum facilities such as ramps, drinking water, electricity connection and separate toilet facilities for men and women in all these polling stations for convenience of voters,” the official said. - PTI

  • March 18, 2024 13:42
    Differently-abled school principal appointed as Una district youth icon in Himachal Pradesh

    “The Una administration in Himachal Pradesh appointed a differently-abled school principal as the district youth icon for the Lok Sabha polls to promote awareness on voting rights,” officials said.

    “Amarjeet Kaur, principal of Ashray School in Dehlan, who has been selected for the role under the Systematic Voter’s Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP), is working to make differently-abled electors aware about their voting rights,” the officials said.

    “She is meeting persons with disabilities and making them aware about various facilities such as wheelchairs and ramps at polling stations and the option to vote from home,” they said.

    Ms. Kaur is also promoting awareness of voting facilities among self-help groups, ‘ mahila mandals’ and ‘youth mandals’ and through social media. She has appealed to people to exercise their franchise. - PTI

  • March 18, 2024 13:15
    Modi flays Rahul Gandhi over “Shakti” remarks

    Vehemently denouncing Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s reported “Shakti” remark at the India bloc rally in Mumbai on Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said those who openly proclaimed their intention to fight against “Shakti” will have to be defeated.

    “Women epitomise Shakti Swaroopa (Maa Durga) and exemplify strength. I am a worshipper of Bharath Matha and Shakti Swaroopini. How can anyone speak against “Shakti” on Indian soil,” he said, vowing to protect Shakti Swaroopa. The Chandrayaan-3’s landing point on the moon was named as “Shiv Shakti,” he noted.

    “The ensuing election is a fight between anti-Shakti forces and those who worship Shakti,” Mr. Modi said, calling upon women to strengthen his hands by giving a landslide victory to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the ensuing Lok Sabha elections.

    Read more:
  • March 18, 2024 12:21
    Tamilisai, Telangana and Puducherry Governor, resigns to contest Lok Sabha polls

    Telangana Governor Dr. Tamilisai Soundararajan has tendered her resignation and sent the letter to President Droupadi Murmu on Monday.

    A press communique from Raj Bhavan said: “The Hon’ble Governor of Telangana and Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry Dr. Smt. Tamilisai Soundararajan has tendered her resignation with immediate effect. The resignation has been submitted to the Hon’ble President of India.” 

    Read the whole story here.
  • March 18, 2024 12:20
    EC launches campaign in Himachal Pradesh to boost voter turnout

    The Election Commission has launched a special campaign in Himachal Pradesh to maximise voter turnout in 414 polling stations which registered less than 60% voting in the last Lok Sabha polls.

    Bypolls to six assembly seats that fell vacant after disqualification of Congress MLAs would be held simultaneously with four Lok Sabha seats in Himachal Pradesh in the last phase on June 1.

    The main focus of the campaign-- “Mission 414” -- is increasing the vote percentage in 414 identified polling stations which registered less than 60% voting in the last Lok Sabha polls, Chief Electoral Officer, Himachal Pradesh, Maneesh Garg told PTI on Monday. 


  • March 18, 2024 11:13
    PM Modi to hold roadshow in Palakkad on Tuesday

    In a bid to garner support for the NDA candidates in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to embark on a roadshow here on Tuesday, party sources said here.

    The roadshow is scheduled to commence at 8.30 am from Kottamaidan anchuvilakku, proceeding towards the Head Post Office in the town, they said.

    Ahead of Modi’s roadshow, the BJP is scheduled to host a bike rally in the town today evening.


  • March 18, 2024 10:35
    “Exceptional fervour in the NDA’s favour”: PM Modi ahead of poll rallies Southern India

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address election rallies in Jagtial and Shivamogga on Monday and later hold a road show in Coimbatore... “I will be addressing rallies in Jagtial and Shivamogga today. Later in the evening, will join the roadshow in Coimbatore. Be it Telangana, Karnataka or Tamil Nadu, there is exceptional fervour in the NDA’s favour.” PM Modi posted on X. 

  • March 18, 2024 10:08
    Modi to hold roadshow in T.N.’s Coimbatore today

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a roadshow here on Monday, days after Madras High Court green-flagged the event, asking the police to allow it with reasonable conditions. 

    The PM will take out the roadshow in the city’s Mettupalayam Road and is likely to end it at RS Puram later today. 

    Single-phase polling to the State’s 39 Lok Sabha seats and the lone segment in Union Territory Puducherry, will be held on April 19.


  • March 18, 2024 10:06
    “BJP’s popularity declining...” TMC MP Shatrughan Sinha downplays BJP’s ‘Ab ki baar 400 paar’ slogan

    In a scathing attack on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Trinamool Congress (TMC) MP and candidate for the Asansol Lok Sabha seat, Shatrughan Sinha denounced the party’s recent slogan “Ab ki baar 400 paar,” suggesting it stemmed from fear rather than confidence. 

    Mr. Sinha accused the BJP of resorting to desperate measures amid declining popularity. 

    “The BJP is in trouble because of a big scam called the electoral bonds case. They’re accused of using government agencies to get money from companies and giving contracts to dishonest companies, going against their promise of not being corrupt. Because of all this, the BJP’s popularity has dropped a lot. Now, they’re trying to win people back with the slogan ‘Ab ki baar 400 paar’ because they are desperate,” Mr. Sinha said.


  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    PM Modi to address rally at Jagtial in Telangana on Monday

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address a rally in Jagtial, part of the Nizamabad Lok Sabha constituency in the state on Monday. 

    Mr. Modi has already held a roadshow in the Malkajgiri Lok Sabha seat in Hyderabad and addressed a public meeting at Nagarkurnool in the State last week. 

    Polling in Telangana will be held on May 13. 


  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    PM Modi to address public meeting in Shivamogga on Monday

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday will address a public meeting at Shivamogga, the home turf of former Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa.

    This will be his second such meeting in Karnataka since the announcement of Lok Sabha election dates. The first was on Saturday at Kalaburagi, the home turf of Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge. 

    Read the story-Eshwarappa sticks to his guns and chooses to skip event

  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    Jairam Ramesh highlights issues in Karnataka ahead of PM Modi’s rally today

    Ahead of Prime Minister Modi’s rally in Karnataka’s Shivamogga today, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh has pointed out issues going on in the state that need to be addressed by the Prime Minister in his rally. 

    “The Prime Minister is in Shivamogga, Karnataka, today. We hope he addresses some of the key issues in the State in his address. Karnataka is reeling under an acute water crisis due to severe drought situations in most parts of the State, with 223 of the State’s 236 talukas facing drought conditions. The State government has requested that Modi Sarkar release funds of ₹18,172 crore for drought relief,” he said. 

    ”Why has the Modi Sarkar refused to help Karnataka’s people so far?” Mr. Ramesh asked. 


  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    CPI(M) finalises seat sharing with Congress in Tripura

    The CPI(M)-led Left Front in Tripura on Sunday finalised a seat-sharing arrangement with the Congress. Rajendra Reang has been nominated as the candidate for the East Tripura constituency, which is reserved for the tribal candidates.

    The party has also chosen former MLA Ratan Das to run in the byelection for the 7-Ramnagar assembly segment in Agartala. This seat became vacant after the passing of Surajit Datta, who had held the seat for six terms during his political career. 

    Read more.
  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    Number of critical polling stations in Maoist-affected Bastar region up

    Given the increased security threat posed by Naxals during the Lok Sabha polls, the Chhattisgarh State Election Commission (SEC) has adjusted its strategy compared to the Assembly polls held last November. There has been an increase in the number of critical polling stations and those scheduled for relocation, as well as an uptick in the expected helicopter drop-offs.

    A senior SEC official said that due to better visibility during the summer months when the Lok Sabha polls are scheduled, the Maoists are more active and target those from the administration necessitating such changes. 

    “As many 1,726 polling stations — all in the Maoist-affected Bastar region — have been marked as critical this time compared to 1,670 such polling stations during the Assembly polls. The number of polling stations marked as ‘vulnerable’ will however remain the same at 109,” said the official. 

    Read here.
  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    NPP will not contest LS polls in Arunachal, to back NDA

    The National People’s Party (NPP), headed by Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma, has decided not to contest the Lok Sabha elections in Arunachal Pradesh.

    The party, a constituent of the National Democratic Alliance, said it will support NDA candidates in the polls on April 19.

    “The NPP has decided not to contest the two Lok Sabha seats in Arunachal since we are a partner in the NDA. The NPP National Committee has directed its Arunachal committee to support the NDA candidates,” Mr Sangma said on Sunday. 

    Read the whole story here.

  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    “More than 2.43 crore voters to exercise their franchise in upcoming LS polls”: Assam Chief Electoral Officer

    Anurag Goel, Chief Electoral Officer in Assam, has said that more than 2.43 crore voters in the state will exercise their franchise in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, which will be held in three phases in the State on April 19, April 26 and May 7. 

    “We are fully prepared to conduct the election in a free, fair and transparent manner. This time, Assam has more than 2.43 crore voters spread over 28,650 polling stations. We have taken a large number of steps. CAPF will be deployed in each polling station, and we will try to cover 55% of polling stations with webcasting. We will deploy micro-observers from central PSUs. There will also be additional videography. We have already activated video surveillance teams and flying squad teams,” Anurag Goel said.

    The Chief Electoral Officer in Assam said that there will be 1,409 women-managed polling stations, 262 model polling stations and 15,777 polling stations where webcasting will be held.” Out of 2.43 crore voters, there are 414 transgender, 1.217 crore male, 1.212 crore female, and 4854 above 100 years old voters in the state,” he said.


  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    ‘Log Sabha’: West Bengal Governor launches portal to connect with voters during elections

    A day after the Election Commission (EC) notified the dates for the seven-phased Lok Sabha elections, West Bengal Governor C.V. Ananda Bose on Sunday launched ‘Log Sabha’ a dedicated portal to stay connected with the people during polling for the Lower House of Parliament in the State.

    The portal comes with the email id logsabha.rajbhavankolkata@gmail.com, through which citizens could connect with the Governor and convey their concerns about polling in the State, if any.

    According to Raj Bhavan sources, grievances and suggestions conveyed and received via the portal will be acted upon immediately.


  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    Seven-phase election will mark Modi’s departure from Centre in as many steps: Akhilesh

    Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav on Sunday welcomed the Election Commission’s decision to hold a general election in seven phases and said the duration will mark the seven-phase departure of the BJP from the Centre.

    “The Election Commission’s announcement is welcome. The seven-phase elections are actually the chronology of the seven-phase departure of the BJP government, which has become a symbol of sorrow, pain and oppression,” Mr. Yadav said in a statement.


  • March 18, 2024 09:42
    Congress party’s agenda is to “use and throw” its allies, says PM Modi

    Hitting out at the Congress and INDI alliance partners (INDIA bloc), Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday alleged that the grand old party’s agenda is to “use and throw” its partners.

    Addressing a National Democratic Alliance (NDA) election meeting at Boppudi village in Palnadu district, Mr. Modi said both the Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy-led YSRCP in Andhra Pradesh and the Congress party in the state were the same and run by members of one family.

    “My brothers and sisters of Andhra Pradesh, never make the mistake of thinking that Jagan’s (AP CM Jagan Mohan Reddy’s YSRCP) party and the Congress party are separate in Andhra. Both are the same. Members of one family are running these parties,” Mr. Modi further said.


0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.