9.15 pm: Here are the day’s top updates:

  • Congress and its allies run nation on ‘hua to hua’ mantra, Narendra Modi said in UP. He claimed members of the opposition have started picking on his caste and added: “I want to tell them that I belong to the caste of the poor of the country.”
  • The Election Commission sent a notice to the BJP for airing election content on NaMo TV during ‘silence period’ in Delhi.
  • Narendra Modi has a ‘personal hatred’ towards me, claimed Rahul Gandhi. The Congress chief told NDTV that there was a fight between BJP-RSS and the progressive forces in the country. 
  • Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi, meanwhile, claimed the BJP’s brand of nationalism starts and ends with Narendra Modi’s name.
  • Navjot Sidhu compared Modi to a ‘bride who pretends to work’. BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said Sidhu’s remark showed his party, Congress, was racist and sexist.
  • Delhi AAP candidate refuted his son’s allegations of paying Rs 6 crore to party leaders for a ticket. The Delhi Police tried to stop Balbir Singh Jakhar’s press conference, claiming it violated the Model Code of Conduct but complained to the EC when the meet went on. 

9 pm: Polling will be held in 59 Lok Sabha constituencies in six states and one Union Territory in the sixth phase of the elections on Sunday. All seven constituencies in the National Capital Territory of Delhi, all 10 seats in Haryana, parts of Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal will vote in this phase. As many as 979 candidates will be in the fray this time.

8.40 pm: “I request the Election Commission please check my car and my helicopter,” Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee says in Hasnabad West Bengal. “But check all the Union ministers’ cars and helicopters too. They cannot be exempted. They are bringing in money through various ways. They even travel in Z and Y category security and carry funds in their vehicles.”

“Please keep a watch so that not a single rupee comes in, not a single outsider comes in and proper democracy is maintained,” she adds.

8.35 pm: Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee alleges the Bharatiya Janata Party is using money to buy votes, PTI reports. “Why is he coming so often to Bengal? He wants to create division among the people,” Banerjee says in Hasnabad, West Bengal. “He is coming with loads of money to distribute to the people.”

8.26 pm: Election officials prepare for the sixth phase of polling, scheduled for Sunday.

7.58 pm: The Delhi Police tried to stop a press conference by Aam Aadmi Party candidate Balbir Singh Jakhar on Saturday saying it was a violation of the Model Code of Conduct, PTI reports. The police informed Election Commission officials after Jakhar held the press conference.

Jakhar had condemned his son’s allegations that he had paid Rs 6 crore to Arvind Kejriwal to get a ticket to contest the elections. “I have never discussed with my son anything about my candidature,” Jakhar had said. “I speak to him very rarely.” Jakhar claimed he and his wife got a divorce in 2009 and his wife was granted custody of their son.

The Aam Aadmi Party also defended Jakhar’s conference and said the West Delhi candidate did not make an appeal for votes or display the party symbol at the press conference.

7.49 pm: BJP leaders stage sit-in protests across Uttarakhand to protest against Congress leader Sam Pitroda’s remark on the 1984 anti-Sikh violence, PTI reports.

In response to a reporter’s question about the violence, Pitroda had said, “Hua to hua [it happened, so what]”. He had later claimed the statement was “completely twisted, taken out of context because my Hindi isn’t good”. The reporter had asked Pitroda about Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s claim that former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had ordered the violence in 1984 after two Sikh bodyguards assassinated his mother Indira Gandhi.

7.37 pm: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee reiterates in Basirhat that she never said she’ll slap Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “I didn’t say that I will slap you [Modi] literally, I said I will give slap of democracy,” Banerjee says. “Why would I slap you? If I slap you, my hand will break, then why should I? Your chest is 56 inch, how can I slap you? I don’t want to slap or touch you.”

7.18 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh claims the BJP put pressure on its Gurdaspur candidate, actor Sunny Deol, to contest polls, PTI reports. “He [Deol] came here [to contest polls] because the BJP must have pressurised him. I had read in newspapers that he owed several crore of rupees to banks,” Singh says at a public meeting. “They [BJP] must have put pressure asking him, either become our candidate otherwise will get an income tax raid conducted on him which the BJP usually does. Then he agreed to become the candidate from here.”

“I was watching a TV channel few days back and a TV anchor asked him what do you have to say about the Balakot air strike,” Singh adds. “He said ‘what is it’. When you do not know what is happening in our country then why do you want to enter politics?”

7.10 pm: BJP President Amit Shah holds a roadshow in Patna with Lok Sabha candidate Ravi Shankar Prasad and Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi.

6.05 pm: Former Congress leader and Delhi minister Raj Kumar Chauhan joins the Bharatiya Janata Party.

5.45 pm: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh mocks Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s promise to eradicate poverty through the NYAY scheme, saying the Congress has been fooling people in the name of ending poverty, reports PTI. Singh says the Narendra Modi government demonstrated its resolve to pull out all those living below the poverty line and claims not a single family will live below the poverty line in the next few years.

5.36 pm: The prime minister says the “award-wapsi” gang has shied away from standing up for the Dalit girl who was raped in Alwar, Rajasthan, reports Hindustan Times.

5.31 pm: Modi says Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy insulted the Army by saying only people who don’t have food join the armed forces, reports News18. “Will you people not avenge their comments through your votes?” he says. “As till now they have not condemned the statement, it proves that they don’t respect our jawans.”

5.28 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi says he has been the longest serving chief minister of Gujarat and served as the prime minister of the country for five years. “See my bank account, show if there is a bungalow in Modi’s name,” he says in Ghazipur, reports ANI. “I’ve never saved anything for me or my family. Whatever I’ve done, it was for the nation and its citizens.”

5.21 pm: Modi claims the Congress, Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Samaj Party have only thought about the development of their families and not the development of the nation, reports News18.

“In Alwar, a Dalit daughter was gang-raped, but the Congress government in Rajasthan instead of nabbing them tried to hide the case,” says Modi. “They want to save the culprits for vote bank politics.”

5.13 pm: “Congress and its mahamilawati friends have run the nation on the basis of three words,” Modi says in Ghazipur, according to ANI. “The three words, which is their mantra, is hua to hua.”

5.10 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses a rally in Ghazipur, Uttar Pradesh, reports News18. “Congress, SP-BSP never focussed on nation’s progress,” he says. “Congress’ mantra lies in three words ‘hua toh hua’,” he says, making a reference to Indian Overseas Congress chairman Sam Pitroda’s remark on the 1984 anti-Sikh violence.

5.07 pm: Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan says Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati commenting on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s caste is like “spitting on the sun”.

5.04 pm: Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati urges the Supreme Court to take suo moto cognisance of the gang rape of a Dalit woman in Alwar, Rajasthan, and derogatory remarks used against women by political leaders during campaigning, PTI reports. “It is most unfortunate that leaders of different political parties are continuously using abusive and derogatory language against women in the campaigning for the Lok Sabha polls to serve their political motives,” she says. “The Election Commission has not been able to act as strictly as it need to have done.”

5 pm: Delhi Chief Electoral Officer Ranbir Singh sends a notice to the BJP for “airing election-related content” on NaMo TV after the silence period began at 6 pm on Friday, reports PTI. All seven Lok Sabha constituencies in the national capital will vote on May 12.

The party was asked to reply to the notice by Saturday evening.

In April, the Election Commission said that NaMo TV, a channel sponsored by the BJP cannot display “election matter” during the prescribed “silence period”. The poll body had barred the channel from telecasting recorded programmes with political content and political advertisements that are not certified by the Media Certification and Monitoring Committee.

4.53 pm: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal sends a legal notice to BJP’s East Delhi candidate Gautam Gambhir with reference to Gambhir’s tweets on May 9, reports ANI. The notice seeks an immediate apology in writing and to publish the apology “along with true and correct facts” in newspapers and on social media within 24 hours.

The notice cited two tweets: “I feel ashamed to have a CM like Arvind Kejriwal” and “You are filth Mr CM and someone needs your very own jhadu [broom] to clean your dirty mind.”

4.49 pm: “The SP and BSP are the ones who in the past wanted to send each other to jail are now making plans to send each other to palaces,” Modi says at Robertsganj, according to Hindustan Times.

4.45 pm: Modi recalls that India successfully carried out a nuclear test, Operation Shakti or Pokhran II, 21 years ago on this day, reports ANI. “This historical incident in 1998 proves what a strong political willpower can do for national security,” he says. “India always had such ability but governments prior to Vajpayee government didn’t have the courage to take such a decision. You can achieve this only if your priority is national security. Only then can you have courage to take a decision for nuclear test.”

4.42 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi says the members of the “mahamilawat” have started picking on his caste. “I want to tell them that I belong to the caste of the poor of the country,” he says at a rally at Robertsganj, Uttar Pradesh. “I provided housing, water facilities, and gas facilities to the poor because I belong to them,” he says, according to Hindustan Times.

Modi has previously referred to the alliance of Opposition parties as “mahamilawat” or “adulterated”.

4.38 pm: Aam Aadmi Party candidate Balbir Singh Jakhar condemns his son’s allegations that Jakhar paid Rs 6 crore to Arvind Kejriwal to get a ticket to contest the elections, ANI reports. “I have never discussed with my son anything about my candidature,” he says. “I speak to him very rarely.”

Balbir Singh Jakhar says he and his wife got a divorce in 2009 and his wife was granted custody of their son. Jakhar says his son has lived at his maternal parents’ home since he was born, reports ANI.

2.57 pm: Aam Aadmi Party candidate Balbir Singh Jakhar’s son, Uday Jakhar, tells ANI that his father got a ticket to contest the elections after paying the party Rs 6 crore. Uday Jakhar claims his father joined politics three months back and has evidence to prove Balbir Singh Jakhar paid for a ticket.

Uday Jakhar says he asked his father for financial assistance for his education, but Balbir Singh Jakhar allegedly refused and said he was going to use to for his political benefits.

2.44 pm: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath targets the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party alliance by likening Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav to Aurangzeb, who had imprisoned his father, emperor Shahjahan, News18 reports. Adityanath claims Akhilesh has “cornered” his father, Mulayam Singh Yadav, and tied up with Mulayam Yadav’s enemy, Bahujan Samaj Party.

2.38 pm: Gandhi says Narendra Modi is spreading lies on his family members. “Five years ago, some people said no one can defeat Narendra Modi,” he tells NDTV. “But we didn’t back down. We fought in Parliament, we fought on the ground. Now he’s feeling scared. No one is today saying Narendra Modi will win.”

2.34 pm: Congress President Rahul Gandhi tells NDTV that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has a “personal hatred” towards him. Gandhi says there is an ideological fight between the BJP-RSS and the progressive forces in the country.

“We are fighting against the ideology that is a threat to the Constitution,” he says while on the campaign trail in Madhya Pradesh. “PM Modi is ignoring the intelligence of the RBI and announcing demonetisation... Wherever I go, the people of the country are saying that there is a force is trying to control the country.”

2.25 pm: Election agent for Congress leader Sheila Dikshit, who is contesting from North East Delhi seat, writes to the Election Commission regarding automated calls spreading misinformation to influence the electorate, ANI reports.

2.19 pm: Rahul Gandhi claims Prime Minister Narendra Modi did not discuss the idea of demonetisation and GST with anyone, reports Hindustan Times. “Had he even asked a shopkeeper whether note ban would be a good idea, he would have refused,” he says in Shajapur.

2.16 pm: “The Prime Minister is supposed to listen to the people of the country,” Gandhi says, according to Hindustan Times. “The PM is not supposed to direct the nation instead the people are the one who take a nation forward.”

2.13 pm: Gandhi says BJP leaders, including the prime minister, have hatred in their hearts, reports PTI. “Or job is the remove that hatred,” he says in Shajapur, according to ANI. Gandhi says Modi attacks his family members, while I have hugged him.

1.30 pm: Gandhi says no farmer in Madhya Pradesh, irrespective of his caste and religion, will be jailed for not repaying farm loan if the Congress is voted to power.

1.28 pm: Congress President Rahul Gandhi addresses a public meeting in Shajapur, Madhya Pradesh.

1.18 pm: The Howrah Cyber Crime Branch arrest a woman, reportedly a BJP Yuva Morcha leader in West Bengal, for sharing a meme mocking Mamata Banerjee, according to DNA. TMC leader Vibhas Hazra had filed the complaint.

The MET Gala 2019-themed meme superimposes Banerjee’s face on actor Priyanka Chopra’s body. The woman, Priyanka Sharma, was presented before a court

1.13 pm: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address a rally in Sonbhadra in Uttar Pradesh, reports News18. BJP President Amit Shah will also address rallies in Sasaram and Aarah in Bihar, and hold a roadshow in Patna.

1.11 pm: Actor Arun Bakshi joins BJP in the presence of party leader and former Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh, reports ANI.

12.27 pm: Actor-turned-politician and BJP candidate Sunny Deol holds a road show in Gurdaspur.

11.54 am: Poll preparations under way in Bhopal.

11.53 am: As many 770 companies of central forces will be deployed in West Bengal for the sixth phase of elections on Sunday, reports ANI.

11.47 am: Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia alleges that the Bharatiya Janata Party’s East Delhi candidate Gautam Gambhir has been using a “duplicate” to campaign for him in order to avoid the heat. He shares pictures of the alleged impersonator on Twitter, claiming that the man was actually a Congress leader.

Read more here:

Lok Sabha election: AAP alleges Gautam Gambhir is using a doppelganger to campaign for him

11.43 am: Sidhu compares Modi to a bride, says he is like that bride who makes less chapattis but makes more sounds with her bangles so that neighbours think she is working.

His comments come a day after the Election Commission sent him a notice for derogatory remarks about Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Read more here:

Navjot Sidhu compares Modi to ‘bride who pretends to work’, BJP criticises him for sexist remark

11.42 am: Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu calls Modi “liar-in-chief, divider-in-chief and business manager of Ambani and Adani”, reports ANI.

11.28 am: East Delhi returning officer asks the police to register an FIR in the matter related to a pamphlet against AAP candidate Atishi, reports The Indian Express. DCP (East) Jasmeet Singh says they have received a complaint and are ascertaining if a case can be registered.

11.16 am: Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam says Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik is doing Modi’s “chamchagiri” (sycophancy) to safeguard his position, reports ANI. “When PM called Rajiv Gandhi ‘Bhrashtachari no.1’ he was criticised so much that he can’t say that again,” says Nirupam. “Guvs should maintain dignity.”

11.13 am: Mayawati demands action against the Congress government in Rajasthan in connection with the alleged Alwar gangrape. “The guilty in Alwar gang-rape case should be hanged till death,” she says. “[The] Supreme Court should take action against the Congress government, police and the administration in the state. This matter is not just related to Dalits but all women.”

11.11 am: BSP chief Mayawati alleges that the Election Commission is not taking appropriate action against leaders making derogatory remarks against women, reports ANI.

11.02 am: Yadav asks if everyone in the BJP has a clean background, and alleges that the saffron party wants to win elections by issuing red cards to other parties.

11.01 am: Yadav says the BJP and the Congress will not win a single seat in Uttar Pradesh the sixth phase of elections that will be held on Sunday, reports ANI. Fourteen seats will vote on Sunday. “In the 7th phase they might win a few seats, BJP will win only 1 seat in that phase,” he adds.

10.59 am: Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav says the prime minister and the BJP blame others for things they do or want to do, reports ANI. “BJP is doing caste based politics and politics of spreading hatred among different castes and religions,” he alleges. “Their govt is based on lies & hatred. Gathbandhan has decided to demolish the govt which was formed on hatred.”

10.20 am: Former BJP leader Yashwant Sinha on Friday claimed that Atal Bihari Vajpayee had wanted to dismiss Narendra Modi when he was prime minister, after the Godhra riots in Gujarat. According to PTI, Sinha claimed that Vajpayee withheld the decision to sack Modi as former Deputy Prime Minister LK Advani had threatened to resign. Sinha reportedly made the remarks at a programme in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.

“After the communal riots in Gujarat, Atal Bihari Vajpayee had decided that then state chief minister Narendra Modi should resign,” PTI quoted Sinha as saying. “While going to the national executive committee meeting in Goa in 2002, Atal ji had made up his mind that the Gujarat government would be dismissed if Modi ji refused to resign. There was a meeting within the party. According to my information, Advani ji had opposed this (dismissing the Modi government) and he told Atal ji that if Modi ji is dismissed then he (Advani) would resign from the government. So, he (Vajpayee) withheld the decision and Modi ji continued.”

9.51 am: Union minister Nitin Gadkari says he has “no agenda, desire or dream” of becoming the prime minister. “Narendra Modi is our leader and will be prime minister,” he tells NDTV.

9.46 am: The West Bengal Police charge BJP’s Lok Sabha candidate for Diamond Harbour for allegedly sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl, reports NDTV. Nilanjan Roy has been booked under the POCSO Act. The alleged incident took place on April 26.

9.38 am: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu asks why BJP is against counting of VVPATs. He criticises Narendra Modi for dragging dead leaders into elections for political gains.

9.33 am: The Election Commission declares re-polling at booth No. 116 in Barrackpore Lok Sabha constituency and booth No. 110 in Arambag seat, reports India Today. The re-polling will be held on Sunday.

9.18 am: Gandhi says some people are focusing on futile matters to dodge questions on income, jobs and farm crisis. She claims she cannot live with cowardice. “I had the thought that at a time this country’s democracy, our Constitution and institutions are under attack, sitting at home and not coming to politics will be cowardly,” she adds.

9.17 am: In an interview to Hindustan Times, Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi says BJP’s nationalism starts and ends with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s name.

Read more here:

BJP’s brand of nationalism starts and ends with Narendra Modi’s name, says Priyanka Gandhi

9.14 am: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh says Narendra Modi should not have linked late PM Rajiv Gandhi with the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, reports NDTV. “What if someone links Modi with Godhra?” he asks. He, however, disapproves of Sam Pitroda’s remarks.

8.57 am: The Election Commission sends a notice to Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu for derogatory remarks about Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Sidhu has 24 hours to respond.

Read more here:

Navjot Sidhu gets EC notice for derogatory remarks about Narendra Modi

8.51 am: Here are the top updates from Friday:

  • Indian Overseas Congress Chairman Sam Pitroda apologised for his purported remark on the 1984 anti-Sikh violence. Pitroda said his remark was misrepresented and “blown out of proportion”.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Sam Pitroda’s remark on the 1984 violence showed the Congress party’s arrogance.
  • The Leh district election officer wrote to the Indian Army on a complaint raised by a candidate alleging malpractice in the electronic postal ballotsystem by commanding officers.
  •   The State Bank of India sold electoral bonds worth Rs 3,622 crorein March and April, the response to a Right to Information query has revealed.
  • The Time magazine has described Prime Minister Narendra Modi as India’s “divider in chief” on the cover of its May 20 issue.
  • Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwalsaid Congress President Rahul Gandhi will be responsible if Prime Minister Narendra Modi returns to power after the Lok Sabha elections.
  • The Aam Aadmi Party sent a legal notice to the Bharatiya Janata Party and its East Delhi candidate Gautam Gambhir for allegedly distributing derogatory pamphlets about AAP candidate Atishi Marlena.