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Have a Look at Some Interesting Facts About Lok Sabha Elections

In Lok Sabha elections, the None of the Above or NOTA option was first used in 2014

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Empty seats seen during assembly session at Vidhana Soudha in Bangalore on Friday. –KPN

With the seven-phase Lok Sabha elections all set kick off on April 11, IANS has compiled some interesting facts about India’s general elections.

* The first Lok Sabha elections in 1952 cost around Rs 10.45 crore, while the 2014 general elections cost almost Rs 3,870.3 crore.

* The first Lok Sabha elections were contested for 489 seats. The number of constituencies was increased to 543 in 1977.

* A total of 53 parties and 533 Independents contested for the 489 seats in the 1952 elections. In 2014, 464 political parties and 3,234 candidates contested for the 543 seats.

* The total number of voters for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections has gone up by 84.3 million since the 2014 polls.

* The new voters have taken the total number of voters to 900 million of which around 15 million are in the age group of 18-19 years.

* A total of 10 lakh polling stations would be set up this time as compared to around nine lakh in 2014.

picture from- www.youthconnect.in

* In a first, candidates with criminal antecedents will have to publish information in this regard in newspapers and through TV channels on three occasions during the campaign period.

* The Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) and postal ballot papers would for the first time carry the photograph of all the candidates to help voters identify the political leaders in the fray.

* The cost of the Lok Sabha elections is borne by the Government of India. Only the honorariums of the poll observers are paid by the Election Commission.

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* When general elections are held simultaneously with Assembly polls, the cost is shared by the Centre and the respective state governments on a 50:50 basis.

* In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Voter-verified Paper Audit Trails (VVPATs) were used in eight constituencies. This time, VVPATs will be used in all the constituencies.

* In Lok Sabha elections, the None of the Above or NOTA option was first used in 2014. (IANS)

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First Hindu Temple Lays Foundation Stone in Abu Dhabi

The temple will be built in phases with all the pink stones and marble being transported from Rajasthan to the UAE capital, the Khaleej Times said

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abu dhabi, hindu temple
The temple is being built on 13.5 acres (55,000 square metres) of land gifted by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the Indian community. Wikimedia

The historic foundation stone-laying ceremony of the first traditional Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi was performed on Saturday in the presence of officials from India and the United Arab Emirates as well as thousands of members of the community.

The ceremony was presided over by Mahant Swami Maharaj — the spiritual leader of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha — the organisation building the temple, along with other priests. Indian Ambassador Navdeep Suri attended the event in the presence of over 2,500 Indians from the UAE and across the world, according to Gulf News.

Suri and BAPS Hindu Mandir committee head and community leader B.R. Shetty were among those who laid foundation stones. Some 50 priests from India were part of the ceremony, the Khaleej Times reported.

Crown Prince, abu dhabi, hindu temple
Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Wikimedia

UAE’s Minister of Climate Change Thani Al Zoyoudi and Ahmad Bilhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Sciences, were among the attendees.  The temple will be built in phases with all the pink stones and marble being transported from Rajasthan to the UAE capital, the Khaleej Times said.

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The stones of the temple will be hand-carved by artisans in India and then transported to Abu Dhabi. Once completed, this will be the first traditional Hindu stone temple in the Middle East.

The temple is being built on 13.5 acres (55,000 square metres) of land gifted by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the Indian community. (IANS)