Presidential polls begin in Bihar
Polling to elect the next president began on Thursday morning in Bihar at the legislature complex in Patna.
The UPA-Left combine, having a strength of 40, 917 votes in the electoral college in the state, is way ahead of its rival NDA which has 37,656 votes.
The RJD-led opposition alliance supporting Pratibha Patil has 81 MLAs in the 243-member assembly, 30 members in the Lok Sabha and eight in the Rajya Sabha.
Though the NDA, which is backing independent candidate Bhairon Sing Shekhawat, has an upper hand in the Bihar assembly with 144 MLAs, it has only 10 members in the Lok Sabha and eight in the Rajya Sabha.
While the value of one vote of a Bihar MLA is 173, each MP from the state commands a vote value of 708.
Apart from the UPA and NDA blocs, there are two members of the Samajwadi Party, one of the Akhil Jan Vikas Dal and 10 independents in the assembly.
The Third Front, of which the Samajwadi Party is a constituent, has called on its members not to participate in the election.
With the Supreme Court saying it cannot restrain any jailed MP or MLA from voting, Lok Sabha members Mohammed Shahabuddin and Pappu Yadav (both RJD) and MLAs Manoranjan Singh and Ranvijay Kumar (both JD-U) and Sunil Pandey (a suspended JD-U legislator), who are all in prison, can also vote.
As Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and his deputy Sushil Kumar Modi are members of the Upper House of the assembly, they are not entitled to vote.