26.18 per cent voter turnout in Jharkhand till 11 am

Ranchi, May 20 (PTI) Nearly 26.18 per cent voter turnout was recorded till 11 am in three Lok Sabha constituencies in Jharkhand on Monday, elections officials said here.

Voting started at 7 am in Chatra, Hazaribag and Koderma Lok Sabha seats, marking the second phase of elections in the eastern state, and will continue till 5 pm.

Chatra seat saw about 26.01 per cent voter turnout till 11 am while the same was at 25.45 per cent and 26.95 per cent in Hazaribag and Koderma seats respectively.

In this phase, 22 candidates are contesting from Chatra, 15 from Koderma, and 17 from Hazaribag.

Approximately 58.34 lakh voters, including 28.35 lakh women, are eligible to exercise their franchise in these three constituencies.

Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) K Ravi Kumar said this phase covers seven districts across three parliamentary constituencies, with polling materials and parties dispatched to 65 interior booths via choppers.

Kumar noted that there are a total of 6,705 booths, including 6,130 in rural areas, with 73 booths managed by women, 13 by persons with disabilities, and 13 by youths.

In the Chatra parliamentary constituency, there are 16.89 lakh voters, including 8.27 lakh female electors, with 1,899 booths. Koderma has 22.05 lakh electors, including 10.65 lakh women, with 2,552 booths, while Hazaribagh constituency has 19.39 lakh voters, including 9.42 lakh women, and 2,254 booths.

The BJP has fielded Manish Jaiswal from the Hazaribag Lok Sabha seat and Kalicharan Singh from the Chatra Lok Sabha seat.

The Congress has nominated KN Tripathi from the Chatra parliamentary constituency and Jai Prakash Bhai Patel from Hazaribag, while CPI (ML) Liberation has given a ticket to Bagodar MLA Vinod Kumar Singh from the Koderma Lok Sabha seat.

BJP candidate from Koderma Lok Sabha seat Annapurna Devi said there was much enthusiasm among people and they were ready to elect the BJP government once again.

“I will work on generating employment for the people of Koderma through the industrial corridor, and will work on improving the level of education,” she said.

Former Jharkhand Chief Minister and BJP state president Babulal Marandi urged people to participate in this democratic festival and decide the course of the nation.

He claimed that NDA will win all 14 Lok Sabha seats in the state besides the Gandey assembly byelection.

BJP candidate from Chatra, Kalicharan Singh too expressed confidence in winning the seat.

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