Jharkhand Assembly Election 2019: Voting for 4th phase on Dec 16

Updated on Dec 15, 2019 01:44 PM IST

While the BJP is leaving no stone unturned to retain its stronghold in the region, other parties including its erstwhile ally AJSU are also making best efforts to wrest more seats from the ruling BJP.

Congress’ Jharia assembly candidate Purnima singh campaigns in Dhanbad on Saturday, December 14,2019, the last day of campaigning for the fourth phase of Jharkhand Assembly Election.(Bijay / HT Photo)
Congress’ Jharia assembly candidate Purnima singh campaigns in Dhanbad on Saturday, December 14,2019, the last day of campaigning for the fourth phase of Jharkhand Assembly Election.(Bijay / HT Photo)
Hindustan Time, Ranchi | By

The high-pitch campaigning for the fourth phase of the assembly elections in Jharkhand ended on Saturday, with polling due on December 16 in 15 constituencies spread over four districts.

Politically, this phase is the most crucial for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as the region, which does not have a single reserved seat for the scheduled tribes (ST), played a lead role in propelling the saffron party to power in 2014 by giving 10 of the 15 seats. While the JMM won two seats, AJSU, JVM and MCC shared one each in 2014.

While the BJP is leaving no stone unturned to retain its stronghold in the region, other parties including its erstwhile ally AJSU are also making best efforts to wrest more seats from the ruling BJP.

“Campaign for the fourth phase polls ended at 5 pm in 10 constituencies. In the rest five constituencies Bagodar, Jamua, Giridih, Dumri and Tundi, the campaigning closed at 3pm,” an election commission official said.

Officials said polling would start from 7 am at all 17 constituencies. However, the polling process would end at 3pm in five constituencies due to security reasons, while the same would conclude at 5 pm in the rest 10 constituencies.

Leaders of all political parties made their last ditch effort to garner voters’ support in their favour on the last day of campaigning.

On the last day of campaigning, BJP president Amit Shah addressed rallies across three constituencies under fourth phase, while chief minister Raghubar Das held road show in Jharia. JMM working president Hemant Soren, JVM-P president Babulal Marandi and AJSU Party chief Sudesh Mahto did several rallies across the constituencies.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a public meeting in Dhanbad, while Congress leader Rahul Gandhi sought voters’ support through two rallies at Rajmahal and Mahgama. Some of the other star campaigners for the BJP included union ministers Rajnath Singh, Smriti Irani besides Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath. For the Congress, Rajasthan deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot and Congress general secretary Jyotiraditya Scindia also campaigned for party candidates.

A total of 221 candidates, including 23 women, are in the fray in this phase. Around five million voters across 15 constituencies will decide the fate of the candidates including sitting ministers Amar Kumar Bauri and Raj Paliwar. Among the 15, maximum of 24 candidates are in Bokaro assembly, while Nirsa has least eight candidates.

The phase is also crucial for the Left parties as four seats---Nirsa, Bagodar, Sindri and Tundi---going to polls in this phase have been Left bastions in the past.

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