Itanagar, April 17: The hectic campaigning which began more than a month ago for the simultaneous Lok Sabha and assembly elections in Arunachal Pradesh, ended on Wednesday afternoon as the state will go to the polls in the first of the 7-phase elections on April 19. Simultaneous polls for the two Lok Sabha seats – Arunachal West and Arunachal East Parliamentary constituencies -- along with 50 assembly seats would be held on April 19.

Of the total 60 assembly seats in the state, BJP candidates in 10 seats including Chief Minister Pema Khandu (Mukto seat) and Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein (Chowkham seat), won unopposed. A total of 8.92,694 voters including 4,54,256 women, will decide the fate of 133 candidates contesting for the 50 assembly seats and 14 candidates vying for the two Lok Sabha seats. Of the 133 candidates, 50 have been fielded by the ruling BJP, 19 by the opposition Congress, 14 by the Nationalist Congress Party (Ajit Pawar), 20 by the National People’s Party (NPP), 11 by the People’s Party of Arunachal and the remaining by the other local parties and independents. Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Phase 1 Polling To Begin on April 19, Check State-Wise List of Constituencies Going to Polls

Though there are 14 candidates contesting in the two Lok Sabha seats, the main contest is expected to be between Union minister Kiren Rijiju and state Congress president and former chief minister Nabam Tuki for the Arunachal West seat while in the Arunachal East seat the main fight would be between the BJP’s sitting MP Tapir Gao and ther Congress’ Bosiram Siram, a former minister. Though the NPP led by Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma put up 20 candidates in the Arunachal Pradesh assembly elections, the party announced its supportto the BJP Lok Sabha candidates in the state -- Kiren Rijiju and Tapir Gao.

Rijiju is seeking re-election for a fourth term. BJP president Jagat Prakash Nadda and former party president and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh campaigned for the party in Arunachal Pradesh. Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and Rahul Gandhi were scheduled to visit Arunachal Pradesh to campaign for the party candidates but they did not turn up. Though the BJP has a solid base in the state and is ahead of the other parties in the electoral battle, two major issues -- the anti-incumbency factor and Christian organisations’ open support to the Congress candidates -- caused concern among the saffron party leaders. Arunachal Pradesh Assembly Elections 2024: BJP Chief JP Nadda Releases Party's Manifesto for Assembly Elections (Watch Video)

The counting of votes for the Assembly elections will be done on June 2, while the results of the Lok Sabha elections will be announced on June 4. In all 11,130 polling officials have been deployed to conduct the elections while 6,874 EVMs would be used for the polls. The Union Home Ministry has provided 80 companies (7500 personnel) of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) to manage the law and order situation.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 17, 2024 06:29 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website