Sunday 20 October 2019

Sporadic violence erupts as voters go to the polls in second phase of India's mammoth general election

A woman casts her vote in the north-eastern state of Assam
A woman casts her vote in the north-eastern state of Assam

Devjyot Ghoshal New Delhi

Millions of voters across swathes of southern India cast ballots early yesterday in the second phase of a mammoth, staggered general election, as sporadic violence flared in the east and the insurgency-wracked state of Jammu and Kashmir.

More than 155 million people were eligible to vote in 95 constituencies in 12 states yesterday, with results of the election to India's 545-member parliament expected on May 23.

In focus were the southern states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, where the main opposition Congress party and its allies need to win big if they hope to stop Prime Minister Narendra Modi from securing a second straight term.

Mr Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have run an aggressive campaign, playing to their nationalist, Hindu-first base and attacking rivals they accuse of appeasing minority groups.

Irish Independent

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