Peaceful start to polling in Maharashtra

April 16th, 2009 - 10:51 am ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, April 16 (IANS) Polling began on a peaceful note in 13 parliamentary constituencies in Maharashtra Thursday morning, officials said.
The 13 constituencies are in eastern Maharashtra’s Vidarbha region and part of the Marathwada region. The seats are Buldana, Akola, Amravati, Wardha, Ramtek, Nagpur, Bhandara-Gondia, Gadchiroli-Chimur, Yavatmal-Washim, Chandrapur, Nanded, Parbhani and Hingoli.

Around 18.1 million voters will decide the fate of 246 candidates, including 119 independents. Polling stations opened at 7 a.m.

“There is adequate security and there have been no reports of any untoward incidents so far,” a poll official told IANS.

The dominant issues here are suicides by debt-burdened farmers, inflation, lack of drinking and irrigation water supply, Maoist insurgency and development.

The polls will unravel the fate of three ministers from the ruling Congress-led-United Progressive Alliance (UPA) - Praful Patil, Suryakanta Patil and Vilas Muttemwar.

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