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Assembly elections 2021: Stage set for voting in 4 states, Puducherry today amid heavy security

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New Delhi, Apr 06: Today (April 6) is is set to be the busiest election day with polling on 475 assembly seats and 2 Lok Sabha seats. This means a total of 475 assembly constituencies across three states - Assam, West Bengal, Kerala and Tamil Nadu - and the Union Territory of Puducherry will vote on April 6.

Assembly elections 2021: Stage set for voting in 4 states, Puducherry today amid heavy security

Massive roadshows and long rallies, led by top national and state leaders on Sunday marked the finale of the weeks-long high-octane open election campaigning. Here is a state-wise look at crucial electoral battles, key constituencies, important candidates:

Assam

Assam is all set to witness direct and triangular contests in 40 assembly constituencies that are going to polls in the last of the three phases on Tuesday to decide the fate of 337 candidates, including senior minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, his five cabinet colleagues and BJP state unit president Ranjeet Kumar Dass.

There are a total of 12 female candidates and 325 male candidates in the fray, whose fates will be decided by 79,19,641 general electors in the third phase. Of these, 40,11,539 are males, 39,07,963 females and 139 are other genders. There are also 24,460 are service voters.

Tamil Nadu

After fierce electioneering over a span of about four months, with a resurgent DMK eyeing capturing power and a determined AIADMK straining every nerve to retain power for the second time. The most intense in its electoral history and the first polls in the absence of stalwarts, AIADMK's J Jayalalithaa and DMK's M Karunanidhi, Chief Minister K Palaniswami, who is seeking a third successive win from Edappadi segment in his home district of Salem, steered his party's hectic campaign.

As many as 13 candidates, including BJP''s Pon Radhakrishnan and Vijay Vasanth of Congress are in the fray for the bypoll to the Kanyakumari Lok Sabha seat. Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, who too embarked on an aggressive campaign, is contesting again from his native Theni district''s Bodinayakanur constituency, where he emerged victorious in the 2011 and 2016 polls.

West Bengal

The voting in this phase will be held in 31 assembly constituencies in three districts - Hooghly (8), Howrah (7) and South 24 Parganas (16). The BJP's Swapan Dasgupta, who is contesting from the Tarakeswar constituency in Hooghly, is among the high-profile candidates in this phase. In the Arambagh constituency, TMC has fielded Sujata Mondal Khan against CPI(M)'s Sakti Mohan Malik and BJP's Madhusudhan Bag. Sujata Mondal Khan is the wife of BJP MP Saumitra Khan.

The polling will be held between 7 am to 6.30 pm in 10,871 polling stations in the 31 assembly constituencies. A total 78,52,425 voters in the three districts are eligible to cast votes to decide the fate of 205 candidates in Tuesday's polling

Kerala

Kerala is all set to go to polls on Tuesday with 2.74 crore voters exercising their franchise to decide the fate of 957 candidates including high-profile leaders and independents in 140 Assembly constituencies across the state.

Kerala has a history of alternatively giving power to LDF and UDF. Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan (of LDF) aims to break the trend and take oath for his second term as the head of the state.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is seeking another term in office, even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah have campaigned extensively for the BJP. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi also took active part in the main Opposition party's campaign in the southern state.

Several heavyweights, including senior Congress leader and former chief minister Oommen Chandy, Kerala Congress (M) leader Jose K Mani, a key partner of the CPI(M)-led LDF, two Rajya Sabha BJP MPs KJ Alphons and Suresh Gopi are trying their luck from the constituencies, spread across Ernakulam, Idukki, Kottayam and parts of Thrissur.

There are 28,19,710 eligible voters in the district, including 13,40,691 men, 14,78,958 women and 61 members of the transgender community.

Puducherry

A total of 30 constituencies across the UT are going to polls on Tuesday, in which 324 candidates are in the fray. The polling will be held in the union territory in a single phase. To ensure peaceful polling, 34 companies of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) have been deployed in Puducherry. Along with that, the Election Commission has also constituted 105 flying squads, 105 static surveillance teams, 26 rolling static surveillance teams, and 35 video surveillance teams.

Elections in Puducherry, which is currently under President's Rule, is mainly between the Congress-DMK alliance and the NDA comprising All India NR Congress, AIADMK and BJP.

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