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First Phase Bihar Election 2020: What is at stake in the first phase?

The fate of several serving minister will be decided in the first phase of the election

As campaigning for the first phase of the Bihar Assembly election ends on Monday, the candidates of the first phase, elections to be held on 28 October in 71 constituencies of 16 districts, are setting up the nerve for the poll day. There is a lot on the stake in the first phase as 7 seats held by ministers will go to polls in Phase 1.

The term of the current NDA government in Bihar ends on 29 November. Around 7.29 crore people are set to cast their votes in 3 phases. Almost 78 lakhs of these are first-time voters.

This time, Bihar Assembly Election is seeing 3 major contenders: NDA, the opposition alliances and Chirag Paswan’s LJP which is seeking to become the kingmaker in the event of a hung assembly.

On one side is the National Democratic Alliance which which includes Janata Dal-United (115 seats), Bhartiya Janata Party (110 seats), Mukesh Sahani’s Vikassheel Insaan Party (11 seats), and Hindustani Awam Morcha (7 seats) led by Jitan Ram Manjhi. The grand alliance constitutes Tejashwi Prasad Yadav’s RJD which is fielding candidates in 144 seats along with Congress (70 seats), and left parties- CPI-ML (19 seats), CPIM (4 seats), and the CPI (6 seats).

There are two more fronts in Bihar which includes Progressive Democratic Alliance headed by Pappu Yadav’s Jan Adhikar Party and Chandrasekhar Azad’s Azad Samaj Party and another alliance formed by Upendra Kushwaha with BSP, AIMIM and two other smaller parties.

Here is what at stakes in the first phase

The first phase of election is a major test for the sitting minister in the Nitish Kumar cabinets. BJP’s Prem Kumar, who have 6 consecutive elections from Gaya is in the battlefield. Jayakumar Singh is contesting from the Dinara as the JDU candidate, a hot seat in the area. Rajendra Singh is the LJP candidate from the same seat rebelling from the BJP. The son of Sadanand Singh, a veteran leader of Congress, Shubhananad Mukesh is the Congress’s candidate from the seat.

Mokama has been a hot seat in the assembly elections in Bihar due to “Bahubali” leader Anant Singh. Singh has been winning election here, earlier his brother had won the election. Tejaswi’s RJD has made him the candidate from the Mokama seat this year. Minister Vijay Kumar Sinha, the BJP’s candidate from Lakhisarai seat is fighting for his reputation. It would definitely make for a hot seat.

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Ramadhar Singh is BJP’s candidate from the Aurangabad seat where he lost the elections last time. Aurangabad is called the Chittorgarh of Bihar. The Rafiganj seat of the Aurangabad is also an attraction for political pundits as JDU has fielded Ramadhar Singh’s son, Ashok Singh from there. Ashok Singh is the current MLA of Rafiganj. Ramadhar Singh is a major Maoist leader who has been associated with Gorilla Army of the CPI Maoist. Most of these seats are expected to have a triangular contest.

People also have their eyes on Rajpur, Ghosi and Jamalpur seat, which is represented by JDU ministers Santosh Kumar Nirala, Krishnandan Prasad Verma, and Shailesh Kumar.

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