Over 52 percent voter turn out in phase-II of Bihar Assembly polls

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Patna, Oct.24 (ANI): Over 52 percent voting was witnessed during phase-II of the Bihar State Assembly elections here on Sunday, as people exercised their franchise in 45 constituencies spread over six districts of the State despite Naxals' poll boycott call.

Over 9.8 million electorates were to decide the fate of 623 candidates including 46 women in 45 constituencies of Muzaffarpur, East Champaran, Sitamarhi, Sheohar, Darbhanga and Samastipur districts of Bihar in the second phase of elections.

Of over 10,000 polling booths, 3,700 were declared super sensitive.

According to Chief Electoral Officer Sudhir Kumar Rakesh, the maximum polling was reported from East Champaran which was 58 per cent. The polling was peaceful amid tight security arrangements in 47 constituencies including some in the naxal infested areas.

Polling that began at 7 a.m., concluded at 5 p.m. except in five constituencies of Minapur, Paru, Sahebganj, Sheohar and Belsand where it ended at 3 p.m.

Earlier in the day, heavily armed Maoists, who have called for a boycott of the polls, raided booth no. 166 in Runnisyedpur Assembly constituency in Sitamarhi district and set afire an electronic voting machine.

According to sources, three poll personnel were reportedly missing after the incident.

In Muzaffarpur district, vehicles of state Janata Dal (United) minister Dinesh Prasad Kushawaha and ruling BJP nominee Veena Devi were attacked at two different places in their respective Minapur and Gayghat constituencies.

While the minister escaped unhurt, his bodyguard suffered injuries in the attack.

Around 48 persons have so far been detained as part of preventive measures in Samastipur, Muzaffarpur and Sitamarhi districts.

Political stalwarts whose fate will be decided include state RJD chief Abdul Bari Siddiqui (Alinagar), his JD(U) counterpart Vijay Kumar Choudhary (Sarairanjan), ministers Ramnath Thakur (Samastipur) and Shahid Ali Khan (Sursand).

The third phase of election will take place on October 28 for 48 seats, the fourth on November1 for 42 seats, the fifth phase on November 9 for 25 seats and the sixth and last phase on November 20 for 26 seats.

Counting of votes will take place on November 24. (ANI)

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