Lok Sabha Elections 2019 LIVE updates: BJP releases 16th list of 6 candidates, Nirhua to contest from Azamgarh

Lok Sabha Elections 2019 LIVE updates: BJP releases 16th list of 6 candidates, Nirhua to contest from Azamgarh

Lok Sabha Elections 2019: BJP on Wednesday released 16th list of 6 candidates in Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh; Bhojpuri singer Dinesh Lal Yadav 'Nirhua' to contest from Azamgarh (UP) against SP's Akhilesh Yadav

Lok Sabha Elections 2019: Narendra Modi vs Rahul Gandhi Lok Sabha Elections 2019: Narendra Modi vs Rahul Gandhi

Days ahead of the Lok Sabha Elections 2019, political rallies are being organised all across the country. Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a rally at Bokakhat in Assam's Golaghat district, saying money for the proposed NYAY scheme would come from the pockets of the "thieves" Modi protected. Addressing the rally, Gandhi said that the BJP suppressed people with draconian policies like demonetisation, but Congress would bring justice with NYAY, which offers a minimum income support of Rs 12,000 for 20% of the poorest families of the country.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister addressed a rally in Mamata Banerjee's home turf, West Bengal. At the rally in Siliguri, PM Modi said that Mamata Banerjee has put the breaks on the development of the state. It is because of her that farmers are not reaping the benefits of PM Kisan Samman Yojana. He also criticised Congress' promise of reviewing AFSPA that they made in their manifesto. He said that Congress wants to take away AFSPA that guarantees full security to the armed forces. Earlier in the day at a rally in Arunachal Pradesh, the PM said that when he first came to Pasighat five years ago, the location was a field. Now it has become a splendid stadium. He also added that every house in Arunachal Pradesh has received electricity after 70 years of independence.

While PM Modi was addressing the rally in Pasighat, Congress released a statement accusing BJP of engaging in cash for votes. Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said that on Tuesday night the police recovered Rs 180 lakh in Rs 500 notes during a raid on Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu's convoy.

On Tuesday Rahul Gandhi released the Congress manifesto in the presence of senior party leaders. From NYAY scheme to generating jobs, the Congress President promised to bring wealth and welfare to everyone in the country. The party proposed five key ideas in the manifesto - NYAY scheme, employment, farmers' relief, education and healthcare. He also spoke about bringing in a separate farmers' budget as well as a simpler GST format. The Congress President also said that they will increase the defence budget and review AFSPA.

Follow Lok Sabha Elections 2019 LIVE updates on the BusinessToday.In blog:

6:20pm: Amit Shah slammed Rahul Gandhi and his guru Sam Pitroda for raising dobuts on airstrike.

6:10pm: Addressing a rally in Sunderbani, J&K, BJP President said that if you choose Narendra Modi govt, in next 5 years we'll oust every single infiltrator from the country.

6:00pm: Earlier today, PM Modi in a public gathering in Kolkata said that some people in their hate for Modi have started speaking against India.

5:40pm: Telugu Desam Party (TDP) complains to Election Commission against Nellore MLA & YSRCP's Nellore candidate Anil Kumar Yadav over a speech he delivered yesterday. The party mentions 'It was intended to terrorise public who are not supporters of YSRCP, ANI has reported.

5:20pm: Navjot Kaur Sidhu, who has been denied ticket for Lok Sabha elections, said she will work for Pawan Bansal's victory from Chandigarh.

5:00pm: BJP releases 16th list of 6 candidates in Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh for Lok Sabha Elections 2019.

4:30pm: Amit Shah addresses public meeting in Udhampur.

4:20pm: BJP President Amit Shah addresses rally in Udhampur. He was campaigning for Jitendra Singh, BJP nominee for Kathua-Udhampur-Doda Lok Sabha seat.

4:15pm: Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi and Shaktisinh Gohil hold a press conference

4:00pm: "There is a speed breaker in West Bengal, who you know by the name of 'Didi'. This 'Didi' is the speed breaker of your development," Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in Bengal's Siliguri.

3:45pm: "We had given Assam special status but the BJP snatched it away. If we come to power, we will once again give Assam the special status," Congress President Rahul Gandhi said in Golaghat.

3:15pm: "Like these people (Congress), their ghosnapatra (manifesto) is also corrupt, dishonest and full of lies," said PM Modi at a rally in Pasighat, Arunachal Pradesh. Read the full story here.

3:10pm: "On one side is the chowkidar's lies - Rs 15 lakh in every bank account, on the other side is Congress' truth - 20% of the poorest people in India to get a guaranteed Rs 3 lakh 60 thousand in their bank accounts," Congress President Rahul Gandhi said in Assam's Bokakhat.

3:00pm: "Looks like the urban Naxals have taken over the Congress and hijacked the party," said UP CM Yogi Adityanth in Baghpat on the Congress manifesto.

2:50pm: Congress has fielded former Odisha minister Panchanan Kanungo from the Cuttack Lok Sabha seat. The party has nominated Manas Jena from Jajpur (SC) Lok Sabha seat.

2:40pm: Mitesh Patel, BJP candidate from Anand Lok Sabha seat in Gujarat, has declared in his poll affidavit that he was an accused in a case related to the 2002 post-Godhra riots.

2:15pm: PDP president Mehbooba Mufti has filed her nomination papers for Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency in Jammu and Kashmir. National Conference candidate Justice (retd) Hasnain Masoodi has also filed his candidature for the Anantnag seat.

2:10pm: "I want to challenge the hooligans on the TMC's payroll. I want to ask them to leave all that otherwise when BJP comes to power, we will make sure that they are straightened," said PM Modi in Siliguri.

2:00pm: "AFSPA gives complete security to the country's armed forces. They can use AFSPA to work for the betterment of the country without any fear. But Congress wants to take it away from the army," said PM Modi in Siliguri on Congress' promise to review AFSPA.

1:55pm: "Despite multiple challenges your chowkidar is working for the development of West Bengal. Your chaiwala is fully committed to work for the welfare of the tea garden workers," said PM Modi at a rally in Siliguri.

1:50pm: "Didi put the breaks on the welfare on more than 70 lakh farmers in West Bengal. In other parts of the country, money is getting directly transfered in the accounts of farmers under the PM Kisan Samman Yojana," said PM Modi at a public gathering in West Bengal's Siliguri.

1:45pm: BSP supremo Mayawati on Wednesday called the Congress manifesto as a "showoff" and an "illusion" and said there was no credibility of the promises made by the party due to its past. "Congress election manifesto appears to be a showoff and illusion like its pervious promises. Due to continuous working against its promises, there is no credibility left for Congress among the people. Congress and BJP are no different in non-fulfilling promises," she said in the tweet.

1:30pm: At a public gathering in Hyderabad, AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his comments on Hindu terrorism. "Mr. Modi, the man who killed Mahatma Gandhi, what was he? Was Nathuram Godse Owaisi's brother? Who was he? Wasn't he a terrorist? Modi must tell us. Would you respond who he was? No, you won't because you know you are trapped now. Mr. Modi is trying to weaken India by talking about Hindu-Muslims," Owaisi said. PM Modi had criticised the Congress party for coining the term 'Hindu terrorism'.

1:15pm: "It's absolutely wrong. 'Cash for Vote' is rather practiced by Congress party. Investigation under Election Commission will reveal all the details. We have got the info that it has been recovered from a BJP candidate's car," said Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu about Congress' allegations. Congress has alleged that BJP was involved in cash for votes in the state ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

1:00pm: "There used to be discussions on scams in Uttarakhand, now there are discussions on development," said Amit Shah at a public meeting in Uttarkashi in Uttarakhand.

12:50pm: "Is this right? It is an effort to weaken the armed forces. They are trying to dilute the immunity of our security forces," said Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, while speaking about the Congress' promise to review AFSPA, during a press conference at the BJP headquarters.

12:45pm: The Election Commission of India (ECI) has directed its state-level bodies to appoint nodal officers to keep an eye on fake news, problematic content and hate speech over social media platforms that violate the model code of conduct of elections. Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, Google, ShareChat and ByteDance have agreed to follow a 'Voluntary Code of Ethics' during the upcoming polls. Read the full story here.

12:38pm: A Thane court has summoned Congress President Rahul Gandhi and CPIM leader Sitaram Yechuri to be present in court on April 30 in a civil defamation suit filed by RSS activist Vivek Champanerkar. He has filed the suit against them for alleging RSS role in Gauri Lankesh's murder.

12:30pm: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has filed her nomination from Anantnag constituency.

12:15pm: Ghulam Nabi Azad says in Kupwara, Jammu and Kashmir: "What is the reason that the situation was steady till 2014? What is the reason that the situation went back to how it was in 1990-91? Only person responsible for this is the country's prime minister."

12:00pm: Visuals from Rahul Gandhi's rally in Nagaland.

11:55am: Congress alleges that the BJP was involved in a cash-for-votes racket ahead of the Lok Sabha Elections. In a statement put across by Randeep Surjewala, the spokesperson said that at 10:30pm on Tuesday night the police recovered Rs 180 lakh in Rs 500 notes during a raid on Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu's convoy.

Surjewala said, "The sensational disclosures and the two videos prove a massive vote scandal... a midnight raid on a convoy of the AP CM Pema Khandu led to recovery of Rs 180 lakh in 500 rupee notes." The authenticity of the videos have not been verified so far.

"If this cash is for PM's rally and influencing the people, does it not prove that the chowkidar is a thief?" he said.

11:45am: Congress announces list of candidates from Odisha.

11:40am: Sanjay Raut on EC notice to him on his article in 'Saamana', violating mode code of conduct: "I've got a notice from EC. Our stand is clear, those who have sedition charges against them should be stopped from going to the parliament at any cost. Hasn't Hardik Patel been stopped?"

11:30am: Niti Aayog VC Rajiv Kumar filed response to Election Commission over his comments against Congress President Rahul Gandhi over 'NYAY' scheme, yesterday. He stated that he made the comments as an economist.

11:14am: "To protect and develop Arunachal Pradesh, you need to ensure that NDA forms govt in the centre," said PM Modi in Pasighat.

11:09am: "Just like them, their manifesto is corrupt and full of lies. Therefore, it should be called hypocrisy document, not a manifesto. In their 2004 manifesto, Congress stated that every house would have electricity by 2009. However, till 2014 around 18,000 houses were unelectrified," said PM Modi in Pasighat.

11:05am: "We never committed sin of betraying farmers but we introduced mechanism from seed to market. Besides, we implemented PM KISAN scheme," said PM Modi in Pasighat.

11:00am: "On one hand, you've people who insult your culture and on the other, you've a Chowkidaar who accepts your culture as his own," said PM Modi in Pasighat.

10:56am: "We want to make Arunachal Pradesh and entire northeast gateway of East Asia. For new Arunachal Pradesh, our vision, is connectivity, resources and respect," said PM Modi in Pasighat.

10:55am: "I am a person who challenges challenges. If I take up a task, I ensure it's completed in time. It's because of your love and blessings that I'm able to work day and night for the people of the country," said PM Modi in Pasighat.

10:53am: Every house in Arunachal Pradesh has been illuminated with electricity after 70 years of independence: PM Modi in Pasighat.

10:50am: "It is with the support of the people of Arunachal Pradesh that we have been able to develop roads, national highway, railway and improve air connectivity of the state with the rest of the nation. I came here in 2014, when this place was a field. In no time, it has become a splendid stadium. Now, good football players will emerge from Pasighat," says PM Modi in Arunachal Pradesh.

10:35am: Visuals from PM Modi's rally in Arunachal Pradesh's Pasighat.

10:25am: Based on complaint filed by Congress and Aam Aadmi Party, Election Commission of India has sought a response from I&B ministry on 24-hour channel 'NaMo TV': ANI

10:20am: "We have no role in deciding a film's release date," said the Election Commission while giving its nod to the release of the Vivek Oberoi-starrer 'PM Narendra Modi'. The film is based on the life of the Prime Minister.

10:12am: The Congress manifesto can be divided into what's doable, what's vague, and what is a good promise but tough to execute. Read the full story here.

10:10am: Congress President Rahul Gandhi is expected to file his nomination from Wayanad today.

10:00am: "Development is reaching: Why couldn't the government make such a road in the last five years that would make them proud? Maybe they don't want anyone to take such a road and reach Delhi fast," said former UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.

9:55am: According to reports, former Congress chief Ajay Maken has expressed his unwillingness to contest for the elections in the absence of an alliance with the Aam Aadmi Party.

9:45am: Election Commission Flying Squad officials have seized Rs 2.10 crore in cash near Tamil Nadu's Perambalur from a former VCK party district secretary during vehicle checks. The cash was concealed inside the car doors.

9:35am: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold rallies in Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh, Siliguri in West Bengal, Brigade Ground in Kolkata and Gondia in Maharashtra today.

9:30am: Visuals from BJP chief Amit Shah's public meeting in Bengaluru.

9:25am: Congress announces the next list of candidates for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

9:20am: "Shiv Sena has been against the minorities. Few years ago,the party insulted Jain religion by cooking meat outside Jain temples during Paryushana festival. Remember, you have to teach them lesson through your votes," said Mumbai Congress President Milind Deora.

9:15am: On Tuesday, a group of policement barged into a publishing firm in Chennai and seized copies of a Tamil book on the alleged irregularities in the Rafale deal hours before its launch. They purportedly had a letter from the Election Commission. Tamil Nadhu Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) issued a statement in the evening claiming ignorance about the incident.