Polling has been slow in most parts of 16 districts of Bihar where the first phase of Assembly elections are underway for 71 seats on Wednesday. The state election commission said around 7 per cent polling was recorded in the first two hours, which have largely been peaceful except for a stray incident of IED planting.
State Chief electoral officer S.N. Srinivas told IANS: “Voting is slow in some parts, but we believe that it will speed up later in the day.”
In the first phase, polling is mostly being held in the southern part of the state. Some of them are Maoist-affected districts where voters were not turning out in large numbers, a poll official said.
The official said that 1,066 candidates of different political parties are testing their fortune in the Assembly election 2020.
Polling began at 7 a.m. and will continue till 3 p.m. in highly sensitive areas, while it will continue till 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. in others.
According to the State Election Commission, 2.14 crore voters will exercise their franchise in the first phase for which 31,371 polling stations have been set up. In the first phase, 114 women are in the fray among the total in contest.
There is high security deployed at all polling stations.
Elections are to be held in three phases for the 243 Assembly seats in Bihar. The second phase of voting for 94 seats will be on November 3 and for the third phase of 78 seats will be on November 7. Counting will take place on November 10.