Jharkhand polls: Counting of votes begins, BJP leads in 21 seats

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Ranchi, Dec 23 (ANI): The counting of votes for the 81-member Jharkhand Assembly began on Wednesday amidst tight security. A total of 1,489 candidates are in the fray, whose fates will be decided once the counting process is complete.

As per the latest reports, there is some good news for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as it leads in 21 seats, while the Congress is leading in 15 seats at present.

Union Minister of Food Processing Industries Subodh Kant Sahay appeared confident and said, "I feel the Congress will be the single largest party and we would form the government."

Sahay's name is coming up for the post of Chief Minister if Congress manages to secure a win with the aid of its alliances.

The fates of former deputy chief minister Stephen Marandi of Congress, former Deputy chief minister Sudhir Mahto of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM), Jharkhand Pradesh Congress Committee chief Pradeep Kumar Balmuchu, and BJP state unit president Raghubar Das would be known once the counting is over.

Former Chief Minister Madhu Koda's wife Gita Koda is also contesting from the Jagannathpur seat, it will be interesting to see if she can manage a win for herself. Madhu Koda is facing corruption and money laundering charges.

BJP and its ally JD (U) contested all the 81 seats as also the Congress in alliance with Babulal Marandi's Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (JVM).

RJD has an alliance with the Ramvilas Paswan's Lok Janshakti Party (LJP), CPI, CPI (M) and Marxist Coordination Committee (MCC).

Shibu Soren's Jharkhand Mukti Morcha contested 79 seats and is not a part of any alliance.

The biggest concern that has come to the fore is whether Jharkhand will have a stable government this time.

Jharkhand polls witnessed a 58 percent voter turnout despite Maoist threat.

The counting of votes is expected to finally bring an end to the President's rule in the State. (ANI)

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