Patna : Bidding began for the third phase of electoral seats in Bihar as early morning voters queued up in polling booths from 7 am to cast their votes and seal the fate of legislators in their respective constituencies. This phase of Bihar polls focuses on home turf for the two leaders of the grand alliance between RJD, JD(U) and Congress, as two constituencies, namely – Mahua and Raghopur would decide the ballot for RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav’s sons Tej Pratap and Tejaswi, who are in a maiden contest today.
A total of 50 constituencies out of the 243 assembly seats in Bihar have prepared for votecast today, after a gap of 11 days from the second phase of voting. The earlier phase sealed the fate of Former Chief Minister and HAM leader Jitanram Manjhi, whose party is bidding in alliance with BJP-led NDA. This phase,however, attends to constituencies which have been a strong hold of RJD as well as incumbent Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and his party JD(U).
23 of the 50 seats where polling is being held today were won by Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) in the last assembly elections. BJP had won 19 in the same polls. Lalu Yadav’s RJD had won eight. Although BJP this time is contesting on 34 seats out of the 50 which have gone for polls today, the other 16 have been distributed amongst its allies in the coalition of NDA. 50 assembly constituencies across six districts will vote in the third phase of the ongoing assembly elections in Bihar. Voting will be spread across Patna, Vaishali, Saran, Nalanda, Buxar and Bhojpur and ends at 5 pm. Voting ends an hour earlier in 10 Maoist-hit constituencies.
Lalu Yadav’s RJD leads the anti-BJP grand alliance in this phase, contesting 25 of the 50 seats. Polling is being held for seven seats in Nalanda, which happens to be Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s home ground.
Of the 243 assembly seats in the state, elections have already been held for 81 in the first two phases, held on October 12 and October 16. Two more rounds of polling will be held on November 1 and November 5. Votes will be counted on November 8.