High Stakes in Bihar: Early Voting Trends in Crucial Lok Sabha Polls

Around 9.66% of 1.49 crore voters in eight Lok Sabha constituencies in Bihar turned out to vote in the first two hours of polling on Saturday. Voting began at 7 am and is crucial for JD(U), RJD, and BJP, with notable contests in Sheohar and Siwan.

PTI | Patna | Updated: 25-05-2024 10:33 IST | Created: 25-05-2024 10:33 IST
High Stakes in Bihar: Early Voting Trends in Crucial Lok Sabha Polls
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Around 9.66 per cent of 1.49 crore voters in eight Lok Sabha constituencies in Bihar exercised their franchise in the first two hours of polling on Saturday, officials said.

The voting began at 7 am in Valmiki Nagar, Pashchim Champaran, Purvi Champaran, Sheohar, Siwan, Gopalganj, Maharajganj and Vaishali constituencies and will go on till 6 pm, a senior official at the state CEO office said. Over 11.95 per cent of voters exercised their franchise in Vaishali, 10.54 per cent in Siwan, 9.49 per cent in Gopalganj, 9.35 per cent in Paschim Champaran, 9.25 per cent in Sheohar, 9.06 per cent in Maharajganj, 8.95 per cent in Purvi Champaran and 8.55 per cent in Valmiki Nagar till 9 am.

More than 1.49 crore voters in these eight seats will decide the electoral fate of 86 candidates at 14,872 polling stations.

The constituencies, where elections are underway are largely rural areas with only 1,281 of the total 14,872 polling stations located in urban localities, officials said.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's JD(U) is contesting four seats, including Sheohar, which was won by the BJP five years ago.

The contest in Sheohar is between JD(U)'s Lovely Anand and RJD's Ritu Jaiswal who is tapping into the resentment among Vaishyas, traditionally BJP supporters, following denial of a ticket to sitting MP Rama Devi who had won the seat many times.

The JD(U) fielded Anand hoping to cash in on the popularity her family is said to enjoy among upper caste Rajputs.

In Siwan, the pitch has been queered for JD(U) and RJD with the entry of Hina Shahab as an Independent.

Shahab's husband late Mohd Shahabuddin had won the seat several times.

The JD(U), in a bid to consolidate its OBC base, has denied the ticket to sitting MP Kavita Singh and fielded a greenhorn Vijaylakshmi Kushwaha.

RJD candidate Awadh Bihari Chaudhary is a veteran leader, a several-term MLA and also a former assembly speaker.

The BJP is contesting three of the eight seats, including Pashchim Champaran, where former state president Sanjay Jaiswal is aiming at a fourth consecutive win.

The saffron party has also backed sitting MP Janardan Singh Sigriwal in Maharajganj. Sigriwal's bid to score a hat-trick is being challenged by Akash Prasad Singh of the Congress, whose father, Akhilesh Prasad Singh is a Rajya Sabha MP and heads the party's state unit.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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