April 11, 2019 / 1:40 AM / a month ago

Voting begins in India's gigantic election spread over 7 phases

A man gets his finger inked before casting his vote at a polling station in Majuli, a large river island in the Brahmaputra river, in the northeastern Indian state of Assam, India April 11, 2019. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India’s mammoth general election began on Thursday, with people starting to line up outside polling stations in the world’s biggest democratic exercise that will be carried out in seven phases.

Voting in the first of seven rounds will be held in 91 parliament constituencies across 20 states and federally-administered regions. There are 543 seats at stake.

Security has been increased after seven people were killed in militant attacks in Kashmir and the east of the country including a state legislator from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling party.

Modi is the front runner in the elections, results of which will be out on May 23.

Reporting by Devjyot Ghoshal and Krishna N. Das; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani

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