Voting concluded for four – Aurangabad, Gaya, Nawada and Jamui – out of 40 Lok Sabha seats in Bihar in the first of the seven-phased polling in the state.
Barring a few stray incidents of violence reported from Nawada and Shiekhpura polling was by and large peaceful.
About 70 lakh voters were eligible to decide the fate of 44 candidates in the first round of polling in Bihar in the 4 LS constituencies consisting of
7486 polling centres. The voting time for Phase 1 elections was from 7am to 6pm. However, Maoist-affected Jamui voted till 4 pm only.
Though Bihar recorded lower voter turnout of 53 per cent, the lowest among the 20 states which went to polls in first phase, the four constituencies witnessed 2.27% increase in voting as compared to 2014 parliamentary polls.
Electorate, including women, participated enthusiastically in the voting exercise despite Chaiti Chhath evening “arghya” falling on the day.
Addressing the media, chief electoral officer (CEO), Bihar, HR Srinivasa, said 36 persons were arrested for disturbing poll process. In Nawada, some people tried to loot the electronic voting machine (EVM) and ransack the control room.
ADG (headquarters) Kundan Krishnan said raids were being conducted at Sisua in Nawada Lok Sabha constituency, where a group of about 200 people tried to disrupt the voting. Police had to open fire in the air to disperse the mob there, he said.
- 6 pm: Polling concludes at 6 pm. 53% voting was registered. Voting in Aurangabad, Gaya, Jamui and Nawada were 49.85, 56, 54 and 52.50 per cent respectively.
- 4 pm: Polling gets over at Maoist-affected Jamui. Jamui recorded 53.35% voting till 4 pm.
- 4 pm: Voting percentage till 4 pm – Aurangabad: 48.75 percent, Gaya: 46 per cent, Nawada: 47 percent, Jamui : 53.35 per cent. Overall polling percentage stands at 48.74 percent in the state till 4 pm.
- 3 pm: Voting percent till 3 pm: Aurangabad – 38.50 percent, Gaya – 44 percent , Nawada – 43 and Jamui – 41.34 percent. The overall polling percentage stands at 41.73 percent in the state till 3 pm.
- 1:15 pm: Large numbers of voters specially female and young electorate are seen in long queues.
- 12:00 noon: According to the state election office, the highest 22 per cent exercised their franchise in Nawada constituency followed by 21 per cent each in Gaya (reserved) and Jamui (reserved) constituencies. In Aurangabad LS constituency, 17.10 per cent voters exercised their voting rights in the first four hours of polling.
- NAWADA: Clashes broke out between RJD and NDA supporters at booth number 270 in Nawada while polling was underway. RJD supporters allegedly forced their way into the polling booth and were forcing women to vote for their candidate. NDA supporters intervened to stop them which led to the clash. As soon as the Presiding Officer arrived, RJD supporters reportedly resorted to physical violence and started pelting stones which resulted in some people getting injured.
- At some villages in Gaya, Jamui and Nawada, people boycotted polls protesting against lack of roads, schools, and health centres.
- No reports of violence in Bihar so far.
- 10:00 am: Poll percentage stands at 13.46% in Aurangabad, 19% in Gaya, 9% in Nawada and 14% in Jamui till 10am, according to the EC.
- Reports of problems in EVM machines at a few booths in Gaya, Nawada and Jamui LS seats.
- Security forces recovered and defused a crude bomb near polling booth number 9 under Dumaria block area of Gaya district in Aurangabad Lok Sabha constituency.
- 8:30 am: In the initial first one and a half hours of voting, people were seen standing before polling booths. It is a slow start but polling will pick up in next three hours,” the officials said.
According to officials of the state EC, more than 41,000 security personnel were deployed in the Maoist affected Gaya, Aurangabad, Jamui and Nawada parliamentary constituencies.
Main parties in the fray are NDA (BJP, JDU, LJP), Opposition Alliance (RJD, Congress, RLSP, HAM, VIP).
Gaya, Nawada and Aurangabad falls under Magadh division while Jamui is part of Munger administrative division in Bihar.
Three helicopters had been requisitioned to provide air cover to security forces during polls.