The second phase of the Bihar Assembly elections has so far registered 36.27% voting, till 12 noon, with the highest posted at 42.97%, in Gaya constituency.
The stakes are high both for the Mahagatbandhan of the JD-U, RJD and Congress, led by chief minister Nitish Kumar, as well as the BJP-led NDA, of Prime Minister Narender Modi, the two main contenders for power.
The BJP, which is determined to make its presence felt in the wake of Modi’s rallies in Jehanand, Aurangabad, and Bhabhua, but the districts are the strongest base of Janata Dal-United (JD-U), and the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD).
Five helicopters, drones, and 993 companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed for security purposes, said additional chief electoral officer, R Lakshaman.
According to the Association for Democratic Reforms, and the National Election Watch, 142 candidates in the second phase of polls face serious criminal charges, including that of murder.
The staggered elections, to select a 243-member Bihar assembly, will end on November 5. The result will be known three days later.