Ranchi:Amid elaborate security arrangements, voting for the first phase of Jharkhand Assembly elections on 13 seats commenced on Saturday morning where an estimated 37.83 lakh voters will decide the fate of 189 candidates, who are in the fray for these 13 seats.
These 13 seats are Chatra (SC), Gumla (ST), Bishunpur (ST), Lohardaga (ST), Manika (ST), Latehar (SC), Panki, Daltonganj, Bishrampur, Chattarpur (SC) Hussainabad, Garhwa and Bhawnathpur.
People will be able to cast their votes from 0700hrs to 1500hrs in this phase.A total of 37,78,963 eligible voters will exercise their franchise. Off these, 19,79,991 are male voters, while 17,98,966 female voters. A total of five are third gender voters.
In this phase, a total of 189 candidates are in the race, including 15 women. Maximum 28 candidates are fighting on Bhawnathpur seat, while 9 candidates are in fray for Chatra seat.
These 13 seats are spread across six districts of Chatra, Gumla, Lohardaga, Latehar, Palamu and Garhwa. Electors will be able to cast their votes across 4,892 booths out of which 4,585 are located in rural areas and another 307 in urban areas.
Since naxal threat was the biggest challenge in this phase, therefore, adequate number of CAPF (Central Armed Police Force) and jawans of the district police have been deployed in this phase.
Among the prominent faces, whose future will be locked in the EVMs at the end of polls on these seats, includes Jharkhand Pradesh Congress Committee Chief Dr Rameshwar Oraon, BJP's Sukhdeo Bhagat, Health Minister Ramchandra Chandrvanshi, Radha Krishna Kishore, Kushwaha Shivpujan and Bhanu Pratap Sahi.
The elections for 81 Assembly seats is being taken place in five phases. The state will vote on 20 seats in the second phase on December 7. Results will be declared on December 23.(UNI)