The fifth and the final phase of Jharkhand polls for the 16 seats ended today peacefully. Voting was started at 7 am and ended at 3 pm on Friday in Borio, Barhait, Litipara, Maheshpur and Sikaripara seats while voters in the rest of the constituencies exercised their franchise till 5 pm. Overall 70.83 per cent voting were recorded in the last leg of the election in Jharkhand.
237 candidates in last phase
A large number of security personnel were deployed for fair and peaceful polling. It is estimated 40,000 security personnel were on the duty in the last phase of polls in Jharkhand’s six districts. Over 40,05,200 voters in the Santhal Pargana region would decide the political fate of 237 candidates, including 29 women
Notable candidates in poll fray
The electoral fate of some of the heavyweights is hanging in balance in the last leg of elections. Former chief minister Hemant Soren along with two Jharkhand minister are in today’s poll fray. Soren, who is fighting in two seats, is facing a fierce battle from Woman and Child Welfare Minister Louis Marandi of the BJP from Dumka and Simon Malto of the same party from Barhait. State Agriculture Minister Randhir Singh’s political fate will also be decided in the last phase of state assembly polls.
Alliance looks strong
The troika of JMM, the Congress and RJD are contesting this election together. While the ruling party is going in the polls alone. At the outset, the alliance looks formidable to wrest the state from the BJP. But politics is a game full of uncertainty just like cricket.
Fierce campaign by JMM
Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) president Shibu Soren and his son, Hemant Soren had used their vocal cord a lot for the party candidates. The JMM has been re-nominating its sitting MLA Sita Soren, daughter-in-law of the party president, from Jama seat. Former deputy chief minister and sitting JMM MLA Stephen Marandi is looking to re-elect from Maheshpur.
Top brass of BJP in poll campaign
The top brass of the BJP including the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Union Tribal Welfare Minister Arjun Munda, BJP’s working president JP Nadda and Jharkhand chief minister Raghubar Das left no stone unturned. Of late they were in Jharkhand to campaign for the saffron party candidates in the Santhal Pargana region.
Congress appeals to voters
The star campaigners of the grand old party’s general secretary Priyanka Gandhi, Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel and film star Shatrughan Sinha were in Jharkhand recently to entice the voters. They addressed the rallies and appealed to the people of the state to vote for the alliance of Congress, JMM and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD).
Hemant lands in controversy
The Jharkhand Mukti Morcha’s (JMM) working president Hemant Soren landed himself in controversy when he alleged that those who wear saffron robes, they are actually robbing the honour of women, the BJP strongly condemned the Soren’s allegation and knocked the door to the Election Commission for complaint.
Poll panel seeks report
Jharkhand Chief Electoral Officer Vinay Kumar Choubey said on Thursday the poll panel has sought a report and CD (of the speech) from Deputy Commissioners of Pakur and Sahibganj districts following the complaint lodged with it by the BJP.
Rapist rests in hospital
Addressing an election rally in Pakur constituency on Wednesday, the former chief minister alleged: “a rapist in Uttar Pradesh is resting in the hospital while his victim is in jail”.
Santhal Pargana JMM bastion
The tribal heartland of Santhal Pargana has been the main bastion of the JMM. People of this region are well aware with the symbol of ‘Teer-Dhanush’ (bow and arrow). JMM has been hoping to bag maximum seats in the tribal-dominated area. If it succeeds to get bagful seats in today’s elections then the arithmetic of Jharkhand polls may be changed otherwise lotus is set to bloom in Jharkhand.
Unearth old issues
The JMM has once again unearthed the old issue of exploitation of the tribal people by the money-lenders and the mahajani pratha (usury). The mahajans lend money to tribal people on interest and then they exploit the poor tribals. The party was also remembering ‘Jal, Jamin, Jungle’ (water, land and forest) to woo the voters of Santhal Pargana. where 35 per cent tribal population are living.
The five-phase Jharkhand elections ended today. The question is will BJP garner people’s support of Citizenship Amendment Act and NRC in the later phase elections in the state. If yes then the ruling party has the chance to play another innings in the state. But the field is wide open. Anything is possible. Exit polls will be out from the bag of different channels and experts today. People have to wait until December 23 for the final results.