| GEO World|
| Polling begins in Indian state of Karnataka|
| Updated at: 1120 PST, Saturday, May 10, 2008|
BANGLORE: Polling began in 89 constituencies across 11 districts in the first phase of assembly elections in Indian state of Karnataka at 7 am on Saturday amid tight security.
The districts where voting is taking place are: Tumkur, Chikkaballapur, Kolar, Bangalore Urban, Bangalore Rural, Ramanagara, Mandya, Hassan, Kodagu, Mysore and Chamarajanagar.
Elaborate security arrangements have been made for the smooth conduct of voting in the 18,500 polling stations.
Close to 58,000 security personnel, including central paramilitary forces and Karnataka State Reserve Police, have been deployed for the first phase, in which nearly 1.73 crore voters are eligible to exercise their franchise.
Polling will end at 5 pm.
More than 950 candidates, including 440 independents, face the electorate in the first phase being held in the Old Mysore region from where the JD-S bagged 34 seats in the 2004 elections. The Congress then secured 24 and BJP 15.