Ranchi: Campaigning on Friday came to an end on three Lok Sabha seats of Jharkhand Rajmahal (ST), Dumka (ST) and Godda seats of Santhal Pargana division of the state where polls will be held in the seventh and last phase on May 19. A total of 42 candidates are in the race for these three seats including 14 in Rajmahal, 15 in Dumka and 13 in Godda. A total of 45,64,681 lakh voters including 23,64,541 male and 22,00,119 female voters are eligible to vote in this phase who will be turning up at 6258 polling booths to cast their votes from 0700 hrs to 1600hrs on May 19. In Rajmahal seat the total number of voters stood at 14,53,511 which included 7,41,410 male and 7,12, 091 female voters while that in Dumka it was 13,96,308 which consisted of 7,18,046 male and 6,78, 255 female voters. On the other hand in Godda the total number of voters was 17,14,862 which included 9,05,085 male and 8,09,773 female voters.
Briefing the press Chief Electoral Officer L Khiyangate said that total number of booths in this phase was 6258 out of which 489 were in urban areas and another 5769 were in the rural areas. The election commission has declared 1745 booths as hyper sensitive and another 2466 sensitive in this phase. He said that a total of 27,536 personnel will be deployed on poll duty in this phase while facility of webcasting will be available on 589 booths.
IG (Operations) Jharkhand Police Ashish Batra who was also present in the press conference said that in the seventh phase to ensure fair and peaceful elections 153 companies of central para millitary forces, 67 companies of the state police, 4700 home gurads and 18,000 district police jawans amounting to a total 37,398 personnel would be deployed in this phase.
Apart from that two helicopters will also be deployed to keep an eye on the movement of the maoists in LWE areas. He said that eight booths have been relocated in this phase for security reasons. Mr Batra said that at all the polling booths there would be adequate number of armed security personnel.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself led the campaigning for BJP candidates in Santhal Pargana along with BJP national president Amit Shah, Union Minister Babul Supriyo, while for the Mahagathbandhan JMM’s acting president Hemant Soren and JVM(P) president and former Chief Minister Babulal Marandi also campaigned.
Prominent candidates who are in the race for these three seats included Vijay Hansda of the JMM from Rajmahal and Hemlal Murmu of the BJP also from Rajmahal, Shibu Soren of JMM and Sunil of BJP from Dumka, Pradeep Yadav of the JVM(P) and Nishikant Dubey of BJP from Godda. At present JMM has Rajmahal and Dumka seats in its kitty while Godda is with the BJP.