Campaigning for the 15 Assembly constituencies of Jharkhand that are going to polls in the fourth of the five phases on December 16 ended on Saturday, EC officials said. A total of 221 candidates, including 23 women nominees, are in the fray in the elections, Jharkhand Chief Electoral Officer Vinay Kumar Choubey said in Ranchi. The highest number of 25 candidates will lock horns in the Bokaro seat while the least number of eight nominees will contest the Nirsa constituency, he said.
A total of 47,85,009 electorate, including 22,44,134 women and 81 third gender voters, are eligible to cast their franchise in the fourth round of the Assembly elections.
The voting will commence at 7 am and end at 3 pm at Jamua, Bagodar, Giridih, Dumri and Tundi seats while polling will continue till 5 pm in the remaining constituencies, he said.
Polling will be held in Deoghar (SC), Jamua (SC), Chandankiyari (SC), Madhupur, Bagodar, Gandey, Giridih, Dumri, Bokaro, Sindri, Nirsa, Dhanbad, Jharia, Tundi and Baghmara constituencies spread across four districts of the state.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP working president J P Nadda, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Union ministers Smriti Irani and Nitin Gadkari and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath campaigned in the run-up of the fourth phase of polling.
Former chief ministers Shibu Soren and Hemant Soren campaigned for JMM candidates while RJD leader Tejeswi Yadav also visited the state.
The ruling BJP has nominated candidates in all the 15 seats going to polls in this phase.
The opposition alliance has fielded candidates in constituencies as per their pre-poll seat adjustment.
Also, AJSU Party, BSP, the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik), the Samajwadi Party, the Marxist Coordination Committee, JD (U), LJP, CPI (ML-Liberation) and AAP are contesting the elections.
Polling in the first three phases of polling to 13, 20 and 17 seats ended on November 30, 7 and 12 respectively.
The fifth and final phase of polling for 16 seats will be held on December 20.
The votes will be counted on December 23.