New Delhi/Nov,10: The opposition alliance, locked in close fight in Bihar, has alleged that it has won 119 seats but the candidates are not receiving winning certificates under pressure from the Nitish Kumar government. The Rashtriya Janata Dal, currently the party with the largest number of seats said they would meet the Election Commission. The NDA which had slipped below the majority mark in a tight contest in the evening, has inched back. The biggest hit has been taken by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, whose Janata Dal United is trailing in a chunk of seats — an outcome brought about by voters’ anger and the solo contest of Lok Janshakti Party’s Chirag Paswan, which appears to have benefitted the BJP.
The ruling NDA is leading in 122 seats and the opposition alliance in 113 seats, in Bihar Election Results. The BJP is leading in 72 seats, the Janata Dal United in 42 and the Lok Janashakti Party is ahead in one seat. The RJD is ahead in 77 seats, the Congress in 19 and the CPI-ML in 11 seats.
Describing the conditions that led to the delay, the Election Commission said they have halved the number of counting tables from 14 to seven. The number of postal ballots have increased and so have the number of rounds. The Election Commission has told counting officers not to be in a hurry and take time. Officials said results will come late night.
“In almost 10 seats, the Nitish administration is delaying the count, not giving certificates to the winning candidates. Sitting in CM’s house, Nitish Kumar and Sushil Modi are pressurizing the Principal Secretary to call all DMs (district Magistrates)and ROs (Returning Officers) to get a decision in favor of the nearest contested seats,” the opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal tweeted.
Earlier in the day, the RJD had advised patience, saying it is still early. “We know a lot of people would try to play mind games in this. We want to tell our leaders and candidates that they should leave only with the victory certificate in their hands,” said senior party leader Manoj Jha, pointing to the coronavirus-related precautions.
In the evening, with nearly 50 per cent Bihar votes counted and its spectacular results in by-elections across states, the BJP was getting ready for festivities. Celebrations started in Patna and preparations were on at the party headquarters in New Delhi. But with the opposition narrowing the gap in Bihar, the party toned it down. Union minister Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi skipped the function.
With Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal United making a dismal performance, party spokesperson KC Tyagi told NDTV that it was the coronavirus pandemic and not Tejashwi Yadav that “defeated” the party. He also slammed the role Chirag Paswan played, saying the Lok Janshakti Party leader “should have been denounced and controlled from the start”.
Tejashwi Yadav — who took the reins of the party as his father Lalu Yadav was jailed in a string of corruption cases — is leading from Raghopur. His brother Tej Pratap Yadav has won from the Hasanpur seat.
Bihar Assembly Speaker and JD(U) leader Vijay Kumar Chaudhary is trailing RJD’s Arbind Kumar Sahni by 230 votes in Sarairanjan. Luv Sinha, the son of actor politcian Shatrughan Sinha from the Congress, is trailing his BJP rival in Bankipur.
The declaration of results in Bihar may take more time in comparison to last assembly polls as the number of polling stations have gone up by 45 per cent, said HR Srinivas, the Chief Electoral Officer of the state. The number of polling stations went up from 72,723 earlier to 1,06,515 to ensure social distancing measures are implemented, reported news agency Press Trust of India.The election had taken place after a bitter campaign that saw the Chief Minister battling anti-incumbency, a rebellion by Lok Janshakti Party’s Chirag Paswan against his leadership — seen by many as being backed by the BJP — and Prime Minister Narendra Modi replacing Mr Kumar as the de facto face of the NDA in the state. Mr Paswan’s rebellion, which has cut into Nitsh Kumar’s votes, has hugely benefitted the BJP.