- Assembly elections in 4 states along with Lok Sabha election
- In Andhra Pradesh, Chandrababu Naidu faces tough fight from Jagan Reddy
- In Odisha, Naveen Patnaik seeking a record fifth term as Chief Minister
The electoral fate of many political bigwigs is at stake today as voting is underway for polls to state assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Sikkim, Odisha and Arunachal Pradesh, simultaneously with 91 Lok Sabha seats in 18 states and two union territories in the first phase of national election.
In Andhra Pradesh, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh, people are casting their votes for all the assembly constituencies. In Odisha, however, voting is taking place in 28 out of 147 seats.
Prominent leaders like Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, his main opponent YS Jagan Mohan Reddy are contesting in Kuppam and Pulivendula assembly constituencies respectively. Mr Naidu's son Nara Lokesh, a minister in the Andhra government, is trying his luck from Mangalagiri.
In Andhra Pradesh, anti-incumbency, caste and corruption are the major factors that could determine the outcome of the elections to Lok Sabha and the state assembly as a 3.93 crore strong electorate decides its political representatives.
Jana Sena chief Pawan Kalyan is contesting in two assembly constituencies -- Bhimavaram and Gajuwaka. State Congress chief Raghuveera Reddy is contesting from Kalyandurg assembly constituency.
Chandrababu Naidu's brother-in-law and actor N Balakrishna is seeking re-election from Hindupur assembly constituency as the TDP candidate.
In Sikkim, an electorate of over 4 lakh would exercise their franchise to elect a 32-member assembly.
Prominent candidates include Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Kimar Chamling, who is seeking a record eighth successive term as an MLA. He is contesting from two assembly seats -- Poklok-Kamrang and Namchi-Singhithang.
Former footballer Bhaichung Bhutia, who is the working president of the Hamro Sikkim party (HSP) is contesting in two assembly seats.
In Odisha, Naveen Patnaik is seeking a record fifth term as Odisha Chief Minister.
In Arunachal Pradesh, the BJP is contesting all 60 seats in the state for the first time. Chief Minister Pema Khandu is seeking a re-election from Mukto assembly seat for the third consecutive term.
Voting for 543 Lok Sabha seats will be held in seven phases: April 11, April 18, April 23, April 29, May 6, May 12 and May 19. The counting will take place on May 23.
With inputs from agencies