Stage set for 5th phase of Lok Sabha elections in five seats in Bihar

Patna, May 19 (UNI) Amid tight security arrangements, more than 95.11 lakh electorate will be exercising their franchise on Monday during 5th of seven phased Lok Sabha elections in five seats in Bihar to decide the fate of 80 candidates including LJP (Ram Vilas) President Chirag Paswan, former Union Minister Rajeev Pratap Rudy and Chairman of Bihar Legislative Council Devesh Chandra Thakur.

Lok Sabha seats where polling will be held on Monday are–Sitamarhi, Madhubani, Muzaffarpur, Hajipur, and Saran. NDA had bagged all these seats in 2019 Lok Sabha elections. BJP won Madhubani, Muzaffarpur, and Saran while JD(U) and LJP won Sitamarhi and Hajipur respectively.

In all five seats, there is a straight fight between NDA and INDIA bloc candidates. Most of the parties who had contested as constituents of the Grand Alliance in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections are now contesting as partners of the INDIA bloc in the ongoing Lok Sabha elections.

In NDA, BJP is contesting Muzaffarpur, Madhubani and Saran Lok Sabha seat while its allies JD(U) and LJP (Ram Vilas) are contesting Sitamarhi and Hajipur seat respectively. In INDIA bloc, RJD is contesting four seats barring Congress which is contesting in the Muzaffarpur seat.

In the Saran Lok Sabha seat, sitting BJP MP Rajeev Pratap Rudy is pitted against Rohini Acharya of RJD. She is the daughter of RJD Chief Lalu Prasad Yadav and donated her kidney to him during his illness due to kidney failure. She has been in the news for posting satirical comments on social media having political overtures.

In Hajipur, the President of LJP ( Ram Vilas) Chirag Paswan is contesting against RJD candidate Shiv Chandra Ram. In the last Lok Sabha elections, former Union Minister Pashupati Kumar Paras had won as LJP candidate from this seat. After the death of LJP President and Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan in 2020, his party had disintegrated and one faction was headed by his son Chirag while another faction was headed by his brother and former Union Minister Paras. BJP has virtually recognised LJP (Ram Vilas) headed by Chirag as the real LJP and given it all seats to contest during seat sharing in NDA, which were earlier contested by LJP in the last Lok Sabha elections.

Chairman of Bihar Legislative Council Devesh Chandra Thakur is trying his Luck from Sitamarhi seat on JD(U) ticket. Thakur has replaced Sunil Kumar Pintu who had won this seat on the JD(U) ticket in the last Lok Sabha elections. RJD has fielded Arjun Rai against Thakur.

In Madhubani seat , Ashok Kumar Yadav is contesting on a BJP ticket while RJD has fielded Ali Ashraf Fatmi against him. Yadav is a sitting MP and contesting to defend his seat.

In Muzaffarpur seat, Ajay Nishad who had won as a BJP candidate from here, is now contesting on a Congress ticket. interestingly, the BJP had fielded Rajbhushan Nishad as its candidate who had contested on VIP ticket from this seat in the Last Lok Sabha elections.

A total of 95,11,186 electorate including 49,99,627 males, 45,11,259 females and 300 third genders are eligible to exercise their franchise at 9,436 polling stations in five seats. There would be 27 model polling stations and 33 would be all managed by women. Arrangements for webcasting have been made at 4,699 polling stations. Paramilitary forces, state police, and home guard jawans would be deployed to ensure free and fair polling.

Polling was held in 19 of 40 Lok Sabha seats during the first four phases of five phases of Lok Sabha elections in Bihar. The counting of votes would be taken up on June 4.

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