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Uttar Pradesh polls: Top leaders wrap up final campaign phase

Varanasi: Campaigning for Uttar Pradesh's Assembly elections ended Monday as top leaders of all major political parties gave their final push to woo voters.

Forty seats in eastern UP, including five in PM Narendra Modi's Parliamentary constituency Varanasi, will go to the polls Wednesday, ending a two-month exercise across seven phases.

Mr Modi made an impassioned plea to voters to defeat the SP-Congress combine and the BSP, blaming the for UP’s plight. He ended his three-day campaign in Varanasi with a visit to Garhwaghat Ashram where he fed cows. He could not address the gathering due to a short-circuit-caused power failure. He also visited the residence of late Lal Bahadur Shastri. He left Varanasi after a rally in Rohaniya.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi addressed separate rallies in Jaunpur.

Claiming that PM Modi has “grown old” and must be “feeling tired”, Mr Gandhi said his party and ally SP would form a “government of youth” in Uttar Pradesh.

BSP president Mayawati returned to Lucknow after wrapping up her campaign.  At a press conference in the state capital on Monday, she claimed that the BSP was all set to form the government with a comfortable majority. Most Union ministers camping in Varanasi left the holy city Monday evening.

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