Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that the people of Bihar had made a decisive decision to choose the National Democratic Alliance’s development vision, even as counting of votes for the Assembly polls dragged on.
The Election Commission of India denied that it was working under any pressure or influence as the Rashtriya Janata Dal levelled accusations of fraud in the Bihar Assembly elections.
The counting of votes is likely to go on till late in the night as the number of polling booths were more this time. The poll body had capped the number of voters allowed in each station, in view of the coronavirus crisis.
The majority mark to form the government is 122 in the 243-seat Bihar Assembly.
Here is a look at the latest election results.
12.08 am: Here’s a recap of what has happened so far:
- Bharatiya Janata Party has won 61 seats (as of 12.08 am), Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) four, Janata Dal (United) 34 and Vikassheel Insaan Party four. In Mahagathbandhan, Left parties have won 13 seats, Rashtriya Janata Dal 64 and Congress 17.
- PM Narendra Modi, Amit Shah said the people of Bihar voted for development, even though the results are not out yet.
- RJD alleged election fraud, while the poll body denied the accusation.
- Chirag Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party has just won one seat so far.
- All India Majlis-e-Ittahadul Muslimeen managed to win five seats.
- NDA partner Jitan Ram Manjhi, who leads the Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular), won from Imamganj seat. RJD’s Tej Pratap Yadav won from Hasanpur seat.
- Even as the contest in Bihar Assembly elections remains a tight one after more than 15 hours of counting, one of the distinct takeaways is the much improved performance of the Left parties. As of 11.30 pm, the three Left parties – Communist Party of India, Communist Party of India (Marxist) and Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation – had ensured victories in 13 seats and was leading in four more.
1 am: Amid allegations of pressure and unfairness from the Opposition, the Election Commission provided more information about what was left to be counte, with no mention of the questions being raised.
“Results in 223 constituencies have been declared. We only have 20 constituencies left. As per the information available, only 17 constituencies where rounds are still going on. Other 3 locations rounds have been completed, VVPATs of five booths [are to be checked]... We are hopeful these things will come to end very soon,” an EC official said.
“Hopefully we will have the final tally in another hour or so, which would be visible to all of you on our website...”
12.05 am: Counting for the elections still continues. Here are the latest numbers from EC.
11.54 pm: “The poor, farmer-laborers, merchant-shopkeepers, every section of Bihar has relied on the NDA’s mantra of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas,” Modi adds. “I again assure every citizen of Bihar that we will continue to work for development.”
11.51 pm: PM Modi also says that the people of Bihar have supported development only.
11.48 pm: Union Home Minister Amit Shah says the people of Bihar have rejected “hollow and caste-based politics” and supported NDA’s vision of development.
11.33 pm: The Election Commission will hold its fourth press briefing at 1 am, reports ANI.
11.26 pm: BJP’s Bihar unit President Sanjay Jaiswal claims that NDA has won under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership, PTI reports. The results have not been declared yet.
“The NDA won because of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and its pro-poor policies,” he says, according to the news agency. “People have reposed faith in his leadership.
He claims that the National Democratic Alliance has won 121 seats and is leading on four.
11.22 pm: BJP leaders in Patna celebrate the party’s performance.
11.19 pm: NDA wins 90 seats, while Mahagathbandhan bags 86.
11.16 pm: Take a look at the leads and wins right now.
10.42 pm: Chirag Paswan’s LJP has won one seat.
10.38 pm: Take a look at the seats won by the parties.
BJP - 48 seats
Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) - 3
Janata Dal (United) - 29
Vikassheel Insaan Party - 4
Communist Party of India - 1
Communist Party of India (Marxist) - 2
Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) (Liberation) - 9
Congress - 12
RJD - 55
10.16 pm: Results of 153 seats are out.
10.15 pm: The poll panel says it is not under anyone’s influence”, as RJD’s levels allegations of election fraud.
10.12 pm: The Election Commission begins it third press conference.
9.52 pm: RJD remains ahead of the BJP.
9.36 pm: The Election Commission releases the status of counting rounds.
9.30 pm: The RJD claims that a returning officer congratulated 119 Grand Alliance candidates for winning the elections but didn’t give them relevant certificates. The party adds that these candidates were shown to be winning on the Election Commission’s website also. “Such loot will not be allowed in a democracy,” the party says.
9.28 pm: All India Majlis-e-Ittahadul Muslimeen President Asaduddin Owaisi thanks the people of Bihar for supporting his party, Hindustan Times reports. “It’s a great moment for us as people of Bihar have honoured us with so many votes,” he says, according to the newspaper. “Our leaders and workers have put a lot of efforts into strengthening our party in Bihar.”
9.22 pm: The RJD still remains the single-largest party with a 23.3% vote share, according to the Election Commission. The BJP’s share is 19.3%.
9.18 pm: The election leads for now are as follows:
BJP: 43 seats
Vikassheel Insaan Party: two seats
Left parties: six seats
Congress: 12 seats
RJD: 50 seats
9.10 pm: Kedar Gupta, the BJP candidate from Kurhani in Bihar, Gupta calls for recounting of votes, ANI reports. He alleges that there was a difference in the voting machine’s figure and the count given to him in writing.
“I’ll write a letter to the Election Commission,” he says. “If they don’t agree then we will approach court.”
9.02 pm: Here is a look at the latest numbers from the Election Commission. The NDA has won 46 seats and the Mahagathbandhan 38.
8.42 pm: NDA partner Jitan Ram Manjhi, who leads the Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular), wins from Imamganj seat.
8.38 pm: The RJD is still ahead of the BJP. Take a look at the close contest right now.
8.27 pm: Apart from Sushil Modi and Bhupendra Yadav, Bihar Minister Mangal Pandey also reaches Kumar’s residence, ANI reports.
8.15 pm: The RJD accuses Nitish Kumar of delaying counting in 10 seats. The party also alleges that Kumar and his deputy Sushil Modi are pressurising officials to give favourable results in constituencies with close margins.
8.10 pm: As many as 3.40 crore votes have been counted till 8 pm, ANI reports, citing the Election Commission of India.
8.05 pm: RJD’s Tej Pratap Yadav wins from Hasanpur seat.
7.54 pm: Tejashwi Yadav is leading from Raghopur seat.
7.52 pm: RJD leader Manoj Jha says his party will form the government in Bihar “200%”, ANI reports.
7.29 pm: The NDA has so far won 20 seats, while the Grand Alliance has won 13.
7.25 pm: BJP candidate Nand Kishore Yadav wins from the Patna Sahib seat, according to the Election Commission.
7.09 pm: Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi and BJP leader Bhupendra Yadav reach Nitish Kumar’s residence as vote-count continues, News18 reports.
7.03 pm: The BJP are RJD are now neck-to-neck.
6.55 pm: RJD leader Tej Pratap’s father-in-law Chandrika Rai loses to RJD’s Chhote Lal Ray in Parsa, according to Election Commission.
6.50 pm: Here is a look at the vote share of various parties right now.
6.39 pm: The Election Commission gives an update on the rounds of counting completed.
6.37 pm: The RJD has now won six seats and is leading in 70. The BJP’s lead stays at 67 and the number of seats it has won is at six.
6.35 pm: The Election Commission has so far declared results for 20 seats. Here is a look at the results.
6.28 pm: The RJD’s lead is now in 71 seats and it has won three. The BJP now has six seats and is leading in 67 seats.
6.22 pm: The poll body adds that the margin of votes is less than 1,000 in 18 constituencies.
6.20 pm: The Election Commission says 119 constituencies have finished more than half of the counting. It adds the results will be delayed.
6.15 pm: RJD is ahead of the BJP now, winning two seats and leading in 72. BJP has won six and leading in 66 seats.
6.14 pm: The Election Commission says 2.7 crore of over 4 crore votes have been counted.
6.08 pm: “Counting officials must not hurry with the results and follow all procedures,” the poll body says.
6.06 pm: EC begins another presser.
6.02 pm: Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar says Tejashwi Yadav has inspired many young people with his election campaign, Hindustan Times reports. “What I saw during campaign was on one hand there was Narendra Modi, who has been chief minister for many years and also a prime minister into second term, along with an incumbent chief minister Nitish Kumar,” he says, according to the newspaper. “On the other side, there was inexperienced youngster like Tejaswi Yadav.”
Pawar adds: “Today’s results may not have brought change, it has paved way for change in future.”
5.59 pm: BJP MP Tejasvi Surya says the party’s victory in Bihar vindicates PM Modi’s good governance, even though the results are not out yet.
5.57 pm: RJD claims to be ahead in 84 seats.
5.54 pm: Union Home Minister Amit Shah speaks to Nitish Kumar as favourable leads emerge for the NDA, reports NDTV.
5.51 pm: The BJP has won four seats, JD(U) two and Vikassheel Insaan Party one, according to the poll body. RJD has bagged two and Congress one.
5.34 pm: The BJP adds one more seat to its tally. The results of nine seats have been declared.
5.25 pm: Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury hits out at All India Majlis-e-Ittahadul Muslimeen President Asaduddin Owaisi, calling him a “vote cutter”, ANI reports. “BJP’s tact of using [Asaduddin] Owaisi Sahab’s party in the Bihar elections has succeeded to an extent,” he says. “All secular parties should be alert about vote cutter Owaisi Sahab.”
5.20 pm: Jitan Ram Manjhi’s Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) is leading in three seats, according to the Election Commission.
5.12 pm: Currently, the BJP is leading in 73 seats, JD(U) in 39 and Vikassheel Insaan Party in four. RJD’s lead is in 70 seats, Left parties are leading in 18 and Congress in 19.
5.03 pm: The Congress has now won one seat, according to the Election Commission.
4.54 pm: Here are the seats won by different parties, according to the poll body’s latest data.
4.50 pm: The JD(U) has won two seats and RJD one.
4.49 pm: The BJP has won one seat and is leading in 75, data from the Election Commission shows.
4.45 pm: BJP workers in Delhi celebrate Bihar election leads, ANI reports.
4.37 pm: Take a look at how the Grand Alliance’s chief ministerial candidate Tejashwi Yadav is performing in his constituency Raghopur.
4.31 pm: Currently, the RJD is leading on 66 seats and the Congress and Left parties on 18 each. BJP leads in 77 seats, JD(U) in 43 and the Vikassheel Insaan Party in five, according to the Election Commission.
4.29 pm: Bihar BJP President Sanjay Jaiswal says there is no dispute about who will lead the government if NDA wins, PTI reports. “The issue has been cleared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party chief J P Nadda much before the elections,” he says, while responding to a question on whether Nitish Kumar will return to the top post.”
4.20 pm: Here are how the latest election leads look like.
4.08 pm: The RJD expresses confidence about winning the election. “We are in touch with all the candidates and party workers in different segments,” the party tweets. “The counting of votes will continue till late night. The Grand Alliance will surely win.”
4.00 pm: Counting is still underway and is unlikely to finish before late evening. Here’s a look at the trends emerging as of 4 pm:
- The NDA is leading in 129 seats, and the Opposition is ahead in 100 seats. Within the NDA, the BJP is ahead in 77 seats and the JD(U) in 47, while the Vikassheel Insan Party is ahead in five, and the Hindustani Awam Morcha is leading on three seats.
- Chirag Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party, which made headlines contesting the polls outside the ruling alliance, is ahead only on one but may hold the key in government formation if the ruling alliance falls short of the halfway mark.
- Among the Opposition, the RJD is ahead in 63 seats, the Congress in 19 and the Left parties in 18 seats. The figures are contrary to what exit polls had unanimously predicted – a clear edge for the Grand Alliance or Mahagathbandhan, led by RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav.
3.56 pm: Election Commission of India has declared first result of Bihar polls – RJD’s Lalit Yadav wins Darbhanga Rural constituency with a margin of 2,141 votes.
3.35 pm: JD(U) doing much better than expected
Janata Dal (United) is currently ahead on 50 seats – doing much better than expected, given the perception of a mood of anti-incumbency against Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
While the JD(U) had focussed on recounting Kumar’s achievements on the welfare front, the BJP focused is campaign on a possible deterioration in the state’s law and order if the RJD-led alliance is elected. The two-fold campaign seems to have worked in beating the negative sentiment against the state government.
Besides, the Muslim candidates of the JD(U) are leading in their territories, while many of the RJD’s minority contestants appear to be trailing, according to The Wire. The Yadavs and Muslims constitute the core support base of the RJD.
3.27 pm: Congress candidate Luv Sinha, son of party leader Shatrughan Sinha, is trailing Bharatiya Janata Party’s Nitin Nabin from Bankipur seat, as per Election Commission trends. This seat falls under the Patna Sahib Lok Sabha constituency, currently held by Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad who had won it against Shatrughan Sinha in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
3.21 pm: Ahead of the counting of votes, a video shared by the RJD, shows a vehicle carrying EVMs and postal ballots trying to enter a strongroom in Arrah allegedly without permission. The RJD, in a tweet claims that while its workers managed to stop this particular vehicle, several other ran away. “Nitish Kumar, you will not win even by doing this,” the party adds.
3.16 pm: Among the Left parties, CPI (ML-Liberation) is leading in 13 of the 19 seats it has contested. The CPI and CPI (M) are leading on three seats each, faring better in terms of strike rate if compared to their larger ally in the opposition alliance, the Congress.
3.12 pm: Rashtriya Janata Dal MP Manoj Jha claims his party is going to win the elections, even as trends coming in show the National Democratic Alliance leading. “The change is inevitable,” Jha says, as he accuses news channels of not showing real time data on the results. “We are getting real time data, we are individually leading on 86 seats,” the RJD leader claims.
3.09 pm: Tejashwi Yadav holds lead in Raghopur, ahead by over 8,500 votes.
3.00 pm: Here’s a look at the trends at 3pm. The NDA is leading in 128 seats. Within the NDA, the BJP is ahead in 73 seats and the JD(U) in 50, while the Vikassheel Insan Party is ahead in five. Chirag Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party, which made headlines contesting the polls outside the ruling alliance, is ahead in two seats but may hold the key in government formation if the ruling alliance falls short of the halfway mark
2.54 pm: Asaduddin Owaisi’s All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen is currently leading in two constituencies – Amour and Kochadhaman. The party has also fielded candidates in Muslim-dominated Seemanchal region, but is trailing on all seats there.
2.49 pm: Members of the BJP Mahila Morcha in Patna break into celebrations, as the National Democratic Alliance cements its lead over the Mahagathbandhan.
2.43 pm: In Bihar’s Gaya district’s Gaya town constituency, BJP’s Prem Kumar, an EBC Kahar leader, is ahead of Congress’s Akhauri Omkar Nath alias Mohan Srivastava. Much of Nitish Kumar’s indispensability in any pre-poll coalition in Bihar is credited to his popularity among the state’s economically backward classes, or EBCs and Mahadalits. These caste groups have largely voted in favour of Kumar-led Janata Dal (United) in the last few elections.
2.37 pm: In Ramgarh, RJD state president Jagadanand Singh’s son Sudhakar Singh is trailing behind BSP candidate Ambika Singh.
2.30 pm: Trends up till 2.30 pm show the National Democratic Alliance is leading in all the constituencies that Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited.
Modi had vociferously campaigned for the Bihar elections. He addressed election rallies in Sasaram, Gaya, Bhagalpur, Darbhanga, Muzaffarpur, Patna, Chapra, East Champaran, Samastipur, West Champaran, Saharsa and Forbesganj.
In his speeches, Modi had largely focused on national issues, the achievements of the Nitish Kumar government, and offered competing narratives of corruption and promised development, while talking about the “misgovernance, or jungleraaj” of the RJD.
2.24 pm: Here’s an analysis by How India Lives on how where various parties stand as of 1 pm.
2.16 pm: Why is counting of votes taking longer than usual?
Moments ago, Deputy Election Commissioner Chandrabhushan Kumar at a press conference said that the poll body hopes to wrap up the counting of votes by late tonight. Over 1 crore votes have been counted so far, he said.
Given the extraordinary circumstances of the coronavirus pandemic this time, the Election Commission had capped the maximum number of voters per booth from a maximum of 1,500 to 1,000. This has invariably led to an increase in the number of polling booths where votes are being counted today, leading to the delay.
“In 2015, counting at 38 locations, now counting in 55 locations,” Kumar said, to put things into perspective. ‘Number of rounds will be 35 on an average.”
2.11 pm: Here are the latest trends:
1.56 pm: According to NDTV, there are now 37 seats where margin of votes is less than 500. In 22 seats, the margin of votes is between 500 to 1000, while in 2 seats the margin of votes is down to less than single digits.
1.55 pm: Visuals of celebrations outside the Janata Dal (United) office in Patna.
1.46 pm: A quick update on the candidates:
- BJP leader Nand Kishore Yadav, who was initially trailing Pravin Singh of Congress, now leads by over 6,700 votes in Patna Sahib seat.
- In Imamganj seat, Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) chief Jitan Ram Manjhi is ahead of RJD’s Uday Narain Choudhary by 5,257 votes.
- In Chainpur seat, Bahujan Samaj Party candidate Zama Khan is ahead of BJP’s Brij Kishor Bind by 4,703 votes.
1.44 pm: The Election Commission also says that EVMs are absolutely tamper-proof, adding that their integrity has been proven many times.
1.42 pm: The poll body says counting is not slow and adds that postal ballots received till 8 am will be counted.
1.38 pm: The commission says there has been glitch-free counting in Bihar and they expect to finish by late tonight.
1.36 pm: There has been 63% increase in polling booths due to the coronavirus crisis, says the Election Commission. The number of locations on ground has also been increased to 55, it adds.
1.35 pm: More than 1 crore votes have been counted and there is still significant ground to be covered in Bihar, says the poll body.
1.33 pm: The Election Commission of India is addressing the media.
1.25 pm: Here are the latest election trends, where the NDA constituents are ahead in 126 seats. The Grand Alliance partners are leading in 106 seats. A party or coalition of parties needs 122 seats for a simple majority.
1.18 pm: HR Srinivas, chief electoral officer of Bihar, tells ANI that 92 lakh votes have been counted so far. “Around 4.10 crore votes were cast,” he adds. “Earlier there used to be 25-26 rounds of counting, this time it went up to around 35 rounds. So the counting will continue till late evening.”
Due to the coronavirus crisis, the Election Commission has also capped the maximum number of voters per booth from a maximum of 1,500 to 1,000. This has led to an increase in the number of polling booths, from where votes are to be counted.
1.15 pm: According to NDTV analysis, Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) would have been leading in 84 seats, instead of 48 right now, if Chirag Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party did not divide the votes.
Pawan split from the ruling alliance in October, citing “ideological differences” with the JD(U), and contested from 137 seats, including all 115 where Kumar’s outfit had fielded candidates.
1.11 pm: Former Bollywood set designer Mukesh Sahni’s Vikassheel Insaan Party, a outfit that joined the NDA just ahead of the Assembly elections, has established a lead in five out of 11 seats it contested.
1.02 pm: Congress leader Pawan Khera tells News18 that the prevailing sentiment on ground was one of “absolute disgust” against the National Democratic Alliance. The NDA, however, managed to race past the halfway mark by mid-morning.
“I would wait for another 4 hours and I am confident of a victory,” says Khera.
12.58 pm: The mood in the Janata Dal (United) office in Patna is cheerful, reports The Indian Express. Even though Nitish Kumar’s party is trailing in a chunk of seats, the National Democratic Alliance has remained ahead in the state.
12.52 pm: BJP leader Pradeep Kumar Singh tells NDTV that there is no decrease in Nitish Kumar’s popularity, insisting that votes were cut because of Chirag Paswan’s party contesting against JD(U).
12.46 pm: It is important to note that the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation is leading in 14 out of 19 seats it contested. In 2015, the party had contested alone and managed to win three seats.
12.40 pm: BJP takes lead over Congress in close fight in Bihar’s Gaya Town constituency. BJP candidate Prem Kumar is ahead by a margin of 3,408 votes against Congress candidate Akhauri Onkar Nath.
12.32 pm: In Bihar, 76 seats now have a margin of less than 1,000 votes, reports NDTV. The television channel also says only 11 to 12% votes have been counted till 11.30 am. Of the 110 seats it contested, BJP is leading in 72. It’s ally JD(U) is leading in 47 seats out of 115 seats it contested.
12.28 pm: According to NDTV, with as many as 30 rounds of counting this time, the first results are not expected before 4 pm. The final numbers could come even around midnight.
12.22 pm: BJP MP Babul Supriyo takes a swipe at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, calls Mahagathbandhan as “mar gaye bhai” as the leads show NDA ahead of the Opposition alliance.
12.20 pm: According to the latest Election Commission trends for all 243 seats, the National Democratic Alliance is now leading on 126 seats. This includes BJP in 72 seats, the JD(U) in 47 and the Vikassheel Insaan Party in 7 seats.
The Opposition is ahead in 102 seats. Here are the full partywise trends:
12.12 pm: RJD leader Tej Pratap Yadav is leading from Hasanpur Assembly seat after six rounds of counting of votes against JD(U) leader Raj Kumar Ray, according to leads.
12.07 pm: Senior BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya tells NDTV that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “image” sailed the NDA through the Assembly elections. “By evening, we will decide on the issues of government formation and leadership,” he says. He also adds that the BJP will “stick to its promise” of making Nitish Kumar the chief minister if the trends convert into results.
So far, 55 lakh votes have been counted, according to the Election Commission.
12.05 pm: As per the current leads, the BJP is the single-largest party in Bihar and managed to secure a vote share of 20%. Its alliance partner JD(U) has 15.50% vote share. Meanwhile, the RJD has a vote share of 23.35%, Congress has 9.31% and LJP has 6.24%.
12 pm: BJP and JD(U) celebrate outside the party office in Patna as the early trends show the National Democratic Alliance has moved ahead of the RJD-led Mahagathbandhan, crossing the half-way mark of 122 seats needed to secure majority in Bihar Assembly.
11.56 am: Here are the partywise trends for 242 of 243 constituencies:
11.47 am: The Election Commission will address a press conference at 1.30 pm, reports ANI. Deputy Election Commissioners Sudeep Jain, Chandrabhushan Kumar, and Ashish Kundra will brief the media.
11.44 am: Arun Singh, BJP national general secretary, says the National Democratic Alliance will form the next government in Bihar, reports News18. “Nitish Kumar will be the chief minister,” says Singh. “In the elections that have been held all over the country, the Bharatiya Janata Party is waving the Congress Party towards the end. Whether the village or the farmers all consider Modi as the Messiah, money has gone to the account of women and farmers, giving ration to 80 crore people.”
The current numbers indicate that ruling NDA may retain power, with the BJP winning more seats than JD(U).
11.40 am: JD(U) leader Chandrika Roy is trailing behind RJD’s Chhote Lal Ray by over 1,900 votes in Parsa seat in latest trends.
Roy is the father-in law of Lalu Yadav’s son Tej Pratap Yadav.
11.36 am: According to the current trends, the ruling NDA is leading in 138 seats and the Opposition alliance is at 102. The BJP is leading in 70 seats, the JD(U) in 48. The LJP is leading in 4 seats.The RJD is ahead in 62 seats, the Congress in 21 and the Left parties in 19 seats.
11.30 am: There are 23 seats currently where the margin is less than 500 votes, indicating a tight contest in the Bihar polls, according to NDTV.
11.22 am: KC Tyagi, spokesperson of JD(U), criticises Chirag Paswan, saying the kind of hateful campaign launched by him against Nitish Kumar is “hurtful”, reports NDTV.
11.15 am: Congress candidate Luv Sinha, son of party leader Shatrughan Sinha, is trailing behind BJP leader Nitin Nabin from Bankipur seat by over 1,200 votes currently.
11.11 am: Two hours after counting began, the National Democratic Alliance is well ahead and contrary to exit poll predictions. Chirag Pawan’s Lok Jan Shakti Party and other smaller parties may hold the key in government formation if the NDA falls short of the half-way mark.
11.07 am: The National Democratic Alliance has crossed the majority mark in early leads, according to the Election Commission figures.
11 am: Congress leader Pravin Singh takes lead a lead against Bharatiya Janata Party leader Nand Kishore Yadav in Bihar’s Patna Sahib constituency.
10.55 am: RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav is leading in Bihar’s Raghopur constituency by over 400 votes against BJP leader Satish Kumar.
10.45 am: Here is how the Opposition is doing:
- Rashtriya Janata Dal: 56 seats
- Congress: 17 seats
- Communist Party of India: 1 seat
- Communist Party of India (Marxist): 3 seats
- Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) (Liberation): 11 seats
10.42 am: A look at initial trends from 207 of 243 seats in Bihar:
- BJP: 57 seats
- JD(U): 45 seats
- Vikassheel Insaan Party: 5 seats
10.32 am: So far, only 4.14% of the total votes polled in the states have been counted, reports the Hindustan Times.
10.27 am: In Harnaut, where Nitish Kumar won his first Assembly election in 1985, his party candidate Hari Narayan Singh is leading over LJP candidate Mamata Devi.
10.22 am: As per the Bihar early trends, BJP is now leading in 45 seats, the JD(U) in 34 and the Vikassheel Insaan Party in three seats. While, the RJD has overtaken BJP and leading in 52 seats. The Congress is ahead in 14 seats and the Left parties are ahead in 12 seats.
10.15 am: RJD leader Tej Pratap Yadav is trailing behind JD(U)’s Raj Kumar Ray from Hasanpur seat, according to the Election Commission.
10.05 am: Janata Dal (United) leader and spokesperson KC Tyagi tells ANI that the party is losing due to coronavirus impact. “A year ago, RJD couldn’t win a single seat in Lok Sabha polls,” he says. “As per Lok Sabha results, JDU & allies were to win over 200 seats. In last one year, nothing has harmed brand Nitish or added to brand RJD, we’re losing only due to Covid-19.”
10.02 am: Chirag Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party is leading only in three seats, according to the latest election trends. His party was expected to eat into the JD(U) votes and give an upper hand to the BJP after he split from the National Democratic Alliance.
10 am: Supporters of RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav have started gathering outside the residence of Lalu Prasad, reports The Indian Express.
9.55 am: Over an hour after counting began, here are the election trends for 99 of 243 seats. The National Democratic Alliance is ahead on 49 seats and the Grand Alliance is leading in 44 seats.
9.48 am: JD(U) spokesperson KC Tyagi concedes defeat even as the NDA is ahead in the counting, reports NDTV. “We welcome the people’s mandate; not the RJD, but a natural disaster has defeated us,” he tells the television channel, referring to the coronavirus pandemic.
9.44 am: The National Democratic Alliance is leading in 37 seats – BJP 21, JD(U) in 12, Vikassheel Insaan Party in four seats. The Rashtriya Janata Dal-led United Progressive Alliance is ahead on 22 seats.
9.35 am: The BJP is zooming ahead in the early trends, having an upper hand over JD(U). Meanwhile, the Rashtriya Janata Dal is leading in 9 seats and the Congress is ahead in five seats.
9.30 am: Election trends currently. The BJP is leading in 11 seats and alliance partner JD(U) is ahead in six seats.
9.20 am: Early trends, according to the Election Commission.
9.13 am: Early trends show the BJP leading in six seats, the Janata Dal (United) and the Rashtriya Janata Dal in two seats each, and the Congress in one seat, according to the Election Commission.
It is important to remember that these are most likely votes from postal ballots.
8.55 am: The Election Commission says the BJP’s Sanjay Saraogi is leading in early trends in Darbhanga. But this is still too early to call any vote.
8.52 am: Postal ballots are currently being counted.
8.50 am: Visuals from outside RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav’s home in Patna.
8 am: Counting of votes begins.
7.38 am: Here are some visuals from counting centres in Patna.
7.25 am: A post-poll survey done by India Ahead News and social science research institute Lokniti CSDS had showed a jump in the predicted vote share of the Mahagathbandhan or the Grand Alliance in the Bihar Assembly elections, in comparison to their pre-poll estimates.
The post-poll estimates also showed a huge increase in preference for Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav to become the chief minister.
The post-poll survey, which was done between October 29 and November 9, predicted the Opposition alliance’s vote share at 39%. The alliance’s vote share in the pre-poll survey between October 10 and 17 was predicted at 32%.
The National Democratic Alliance’s predicted pre-poll share was 38%, while in the post-poll estimate it was 36%.
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7.15 am: Political leaders were on Monday confined to their homes and refused to comment on the election results, reports The Hindu. Tejashwi Yadav, who turned 31, celebrated a quiet birthday. As most exit polls were in his favour, the Rashtriya Janata Dal asked its supporters to maintain discipline and warned against extreme reactions, irrespective of the results.
7 am: For Tuesday’s counting, the Election Commission of India says it has set up a total of 55 counting centres, spread across all the 38 districts of Bihar that voted, reports PTI. Meanwhile, Bihar Chief Electoral Officer HR Srinivasa says the poll body has established a three-tier security system for strong rooms (housing the Electronic Voting Machines) and the counting centres.
“We have deployed 19 companies of CAPF [Central Armed Police Forces] just for the security of the strong rooms and counting centres,” he says. “Besides, we have 59 CAPF companies to ensure law and order during and in the aftermath of the counting process.”
6.50 am: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, meanwhile, has been impressing upon voters to choose Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, lest they want a return to the “goonda raj” of the Lalu Prasad Yadav-led Rashtriya Janata Dal era.
6.40 am: The Opposition, led by Lalu Yadav’s son Tejashwi Yadav, has consistently focused on development, fight against corruption and jobs for unemployed youth in Bihar, where nearly 58% of the population is below the age of 25.
6.30 am: Nitish Kumar’s “sushashan”, or good governance plank, is at stake in the Bihar Assembly elections. The 69-year-old faces multiple challenges as people await the election result in the state. The heckling at his election rallies and pro-Opposition slogans, among others, indicate the anti-incumbency mood.
It’s also important to remember that Kumar has failed to negotiate well with the central government and get Bihar its long-promised “special status”. The National Democratic Alliance has tried to bury the matters related to coronavirus pandemic, the difficulties faced by migrant workers during the lockdown to shift focus to the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya, the scrapping of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and on national security issues.
6.20 am: Most exit polls predicted a clear edge for the Mahagatbandhan, led by Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav. Nitish Kumar, fighting for a fourth straight term as Bihar chief minister and battling anti-incumbency, is not expected to retain many seats.
Hindi daily Dainik Bhaskar’s exit poll was the only one to predict a majority for the ruling National Democratic Alliance, giving it 120-127 seats, while it projected a tally of 71-81 seats for the Mahagathbandhan.
A poll of all the exit polls, put together by news channel NDTV, gave 124 seats to the Grand Alliance and 103 to the NDA.
6.10 am: Who are the main contenders?
- Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav is the chief ministerial candidate for the Opposition coalition in Bihar to fight against incumbent Nitish Kumar. RJD has been allotted 144 seats out of 243, while the Congress and Left parties have put up candidates in 70 and 29 seats, respectively.
- Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, meanwhile, heads the National Democratic Alliance in Bihar with the BJP. Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) was allocated 122 constituencies, making it the larger partner of the NDA in the state. The Bharatiya Janata Party got 121 seats. Out of their quota, the JD(U) gave seven seats to Jitan Ram Manjhi’s Hindustani Awam Morcha, while the BJP gave 11 seats to Mukesh Sahani’s Vikassheel Insaan Party. Both the smaller parties were with the Opposition in last year’s Lok Sabha elections.
- Chirag Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party, which split from the ruling alliance in October citing “ideological differences” with the JD(U), contested from 137 seats, including all 115 where Kumar’s outfit had fielded candidates. Swearing allegiance to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Paswan had announced that his party would field candidates against the JD(U), but not against the BJP.
- Marginal players – Upendra Kushwaha’s Rashtriya Lok Samata Party, Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party, Asaduddin Owaisi’s All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, Pappu Yadav’s Jan Adhikar Party and Bhim Army’s Chandrasekhar Azad – are also in the fray.
6 am: The Bihar Assembly elections were held in three phases on October 28, November 3 and November 7. The state recorded 57.05% turnout in the polls, marginally higher than that of 2015 despite the coronavirus pandemic, according to official data.