Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party was set for a sweeping victory in Uttar Pradesh as counting of votes till 5pm showed BJP leading in 324 constituencies.
Here is the latest tally- BJP: 324, SP- Congress: 54, BSP: 20, Others: 5
Exit polls had predicted the BJP will be the single largest party in the politically crucial state, where it fared exceptionally well in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
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Below are the highlights till 10:08 am:
10:08am: BJP is leading in five out of nine seats in Samajwadi Party’s stronghold Jaunpur
10:05am: In Jewar, Thakur Dhirendra Singh of BJP is leading by 2122 votes. Singh is a former aide of Rahul Gandhi and was the spokesperson of the UP Congress before switching over to BJP after being denied a ticket.
In Dadri, BJP’s Tejpal Singh Nagar is leading over his nearest rival Satvir Singh Gujjar of BSP by 8147 votes after third round.
10:04am: Son of home minister Rajnath Singh and BJP candidate Pankaj Singh is leading over his nearest rival by 11576 votes in Noida after fifth round.
10:00am: Samajwadi Party leads in three out of four seats in Mainpuri
9:55am: BJP announces firecracker show at 10:30 am as trends show party sweeping the state
9:52am: Latest trends: The BJP is now leading in 252 seats, SP-Congress is leading in 72 seats, whereas the BSP is lagging behind with leads in just 30 seats
9:50am: BJP is leading in five of the six constituency seats in Badaun. Badaun is a bastion of Samajwadi Party
9:45am: BSP supporters outside a party camp in Meerut. Trends show BSP lagging behind in the state.
9:41am: On Soraon seat of Allahabad, Apna-Dal BJP candidate Jamuna Prasad is leading
9:36am: SP’s Shivpal Yadav is leading from Jaswant Nagar seat
9:34am: Bharatiya Janata Party is now leading on 210 seats, crossing halfway mark of 202
9:31am: SP’s Gayatri Prajapati is leading after first round
9:28am: Congress’ Jitin Prasada is leading after phase 2 of poll counting. He is contesting from Tilhar constituency in Shahjahanpur
9:23am: BJP workers celebrate in Lucknow after early trends show party leading on over 185 seats
9:20am: BJP is leaping ahead -- the party is leading at three seats in PM Modi’s constituency Varanasi
9:19am: BJP leading on all the six seats in Unnao
9:15am: BJP’s Pankaj Singh is leading over his nearest rival by 4200 votes in Noida; BJP’s Tejpal Nagar is leading by 7000 votes in Dadri while in Jewar BSP’s Vedram Bhati is leading over Thakur Dhirendra Singh of BJP by 1000 votes.
9:12am: BJP is now leading on 132 seats whereas SP-Congress alliance is leading on 35 seats
9:10am: BJP candidate Manish Asija ahead in Firozabad
9:02am: BJP candidate Jitendra Verma leading in Fatehabad
9:00am: BJP national secretary and candidate from Mathura seat, Sri Kant Sharma, leading
8:57am: SP’s Aparna Yadav trailing from Lucknow Cantt constituency. She is contesting against BJP’s Rita Bahuguna Joshi
8:53am: BJP candidate Sunil Sharma ahead of Congress candidate and sitting MLA Amarpal Sharma in Sahibbad
8:48am: Azam Khan’s son Abdullah is trailing from Swar, Rampur, reports ANI
8:46am: BJP is leading on all 10 seats in Kanpur
8:45am: Pankaj Singh of BJP leading in Noida Constituency
8:44am: BJP leading on 5 seats in Lucknow, reports ANI
8:42am: BJP’s Garima Singh is leading in Amethi
8:40am: Trends from at least 80 seats show BJP leading in 37 seats and the SP-Congress combine in 20. The Bahujan Samaj Party is ahead in 16 seats.
8:37am: SP’s Rafeeq Ansari leading at Meerut City constituency. He is contesting against BJP’s former state president Dr Laxmikant Bajpai
8:36am: Muzaffarnagar riot-tainted Suresh Rana of BJP leading on Thanabhawan constituency
8:34am: In Pratapgarh, Aradhana Misra leading on Rampur Khas seat. She is daughter of Congress Rajya Sabha MP Pramod Tiwari.
8:33am: In Pratapgarh, Raghuraj Pratap Singh aka Raja Bhaiyya leading on Kunda seat. He is contesting as an Independent.
8:31am: According to the early trends, BJP is leading in 12 seats, SP in 9 seats and BSP in 3 seats (Total: 24 seats)
8:30am: Nahid Hasan of SP leading in Kairana constituency of Shamli District.
8:28am: Drone cameras being used for surveillance near a counting centre in Lucknow
8:25am: Counting begins for 5 seats in Mathura and 12 seats in Allahabad
8:23am: : BSP leading from Bulandshahr, reports ANI
8:21am: First leads in, BJP ahead in Uttar Pradesh’s Shamli West
8:20am: Security personnel barricade a road leading to a counting centre in Agra (HT Photo)
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8:10: Counting underway at a centre in Allahabad
8:05am: In the politically crucial UP, all five exit polls forecast a hung assembly. Two gave the BJP a clear advantage over its nearest rival, the Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance, while two others predicted a close fight between the two formations.
The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) was seen as a distant third in all exit polls available for the 403-member house.
8:00am: And the counting of votes has begun in the state
7:55am: The counting for seven-phased assembly elections is about to begin. Will it be a win for SP-Congress or will BJP get back to power after 14 years?
7:50am: The Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), which has a big Jat voter base, has indicated it may support the BJP after the polls.
7:45am: Jats, who played a key role in BJP’s Lok Sabha victory, are said to have deserted Modi’s party. Will it affect party’s prospects in western UP?
7;39am: In Amethi assembly constituency, SP’s rape-accused minister Gayatri Prasad Prajapati contesting against the Congress’s Rani Amita Singh and BJP’s Garima Singh.
7:35am: Security arrangements in place outside counting centres in Moradabad
7:25am: Constituency of Lucknow Cantt may see a tough fight where Mulayam Singh’s younger daughter-in-law Aparna Yadav is contesting against sitting MLA Rita Bahuguna Joshi of the BJP.
7:15am: Uttar Pradesh formed the backbone of PM Narendra Modi’s Lok Sabha campaign in 2014 when the BJP won 71 of 80 seats.
For incumbent chief minister Akhilesh Yadav who overcame a bruising public spat within his family, the election is a personal prestige fight.
7:10am: BJP’s Keshav Prasad Maurya tells ANI the party will win with 2/3rd majority
7:05am: Ahead of the counting, Samajwadi Party workers are seen performing havan in Lucknow
6:55am: SP-Congress alliance will win today,and we will expose the people who were conspiring against CM: Samajwadi Party’s Rajendra Chaudhary tells ANI
6:44am: BJP candidate from Lucknow Cantt Rita Bahuguna Joshi offers prayers at Hazratganj’s Hanuman Temple (ANI Photo)
6:30am: Good morning and welcome to the Hindustan Times live coverage of Uttar Pradesh assembly elections. Follow this space for all the updates from the state where the stakes are high.
Below are the highlights from Friday:
10 pm IST: Sweets being prepared ahead of the election results being counted and declared in Varanasi
9.30 pm IST: Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Sighvi cites the Bihar election as an example of how exit polls can get the results wrong. “The reasons why exit polls get it wrong is because it is most successful in homogenous communities. They are less accurate in planet Earth’s most diverse spot, India,” he said during a press briefing by the party in Parliament.
If the exit poll outcomes are a true reflection of the Uttar Pradesh assembly election results, the Bharatiya Janata Party will emerge as the single largest party, but may fall short of a majority. A post-poll alliance between the SP and the BSP has suddenly cropped up as a realistic proposition.
8.10 pm IST: The Congress said it was open to post-poll alliances, even though it exuded confidence of emerging victorious in all five states, including Uttar Pradesh in alliance with the Samajwadi Party.
“It is obvious that neither politics nor nature permits a vacuum. In such a situation, not a single voter or party would want elections after elections.
“Therefore, in that situation the most easily available handshake which will ensure a certain amount of continuity in governance without a vacuum will be attempted,” Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said.
8.15 pm IST: We have compiled a list of our best stories on the state’s election season. Ahead of Saturday’s declaration of results, here is all you need to know on the complex dynamics in Uttar Pradesh.
8.00 pm IST: Preparations for the counting of votes cast in the seven rounds of the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections have been completed, an Election Commission (EC) said. Counting of the ballots for the 403 assembly seats will begin at 8 am and continue till the process is completed and the results declared.
At places where the distance between the strongrooms and the counting centers is more, “sanitized corridors” will be created.
Mobile phones have been banned inside the counting centres and information about the developments will be given to journalists only at the media centres made at all counting centres.
7.00 pm IST: Leaders across party lines comment on the results of the exit polls released on Thursday. Senior minister Mohammad Azam Khan dismissed the results and predicted 380 seats for his Samajwadi Party, getting his maths wrong.
IANS reports that Khan predicted 80 seats for the Bahujan Samaj Party, 25 for the BJP while neglecting the Congress party completely. The total number of assembly seats, as per Khan’s prediction, works out to 485 while the assembly has just 403 seats.
RJD president Lalu Prasad Yadav also rubbished the exit polls. “Like in Bihar elections, all the exit polls would fall flat in Uttar Pradesh where Samajwadi Party-Congress would emerge victorious,” Prasad told reporters.
Follow complete coverage of the 2017 assembly elections here.