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|October 27, 1999||
Tight security for polls in Bihar
Shoot-at-sight orders have been issued in the four Lok Sabha constituencies in Bihar going to the polls tomorrow.
Elections to the four constituencies -- Rajmahal, Khagaria, Purnea and Bhagalpur -- were deferred because of floods.
Combing operations have been intensified and special measures are being taken to detect landmines in the extremist-affected areas.
Besides 24 companies of paramilitary forces, 50 companies of state police force and home guards would also be deployed in these constituencies.
As many as 40 people, including security and polling officials, lost their lives in poll and post-poll violence in Bihar during the recent elections as extremists detonated landmines at many places in Palamu, Hazaribagh and Rohtas districts.
The second phase of elections in the state held on September 25 claimed 15 lives, mostly in armed clashes between rival political groups.
The third phase of election was by and large peaceful. Only one person was killed in the Madhepura constituency where Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Laloo Prasad Yadav and Janata Dal-United president Sharad Yadav were locked in a keen contest.
More than 4.3 million voters are expected to exercise their franchise at 5,917 booths in the last phase tomorrow.
The contest in Khagaria, Purnea and Rajmahal will be triangular though there are several candidates in all the four constituencies.
Purnea has 14 candidates, while voters in Rajmahal will have to choose from among seven candidates. The number of candidates in Bhagalpur and Khagaria are 12 and 9 respectively.
In the last election, the BJP had won the Purnea, Rajmahal and Bhagalpur seats, while its coalition partner, the Samata Party, bagged Khagaria.
This time the CPI-M has fielded Subodh Roy from Bhagalpur and Abdul Khalil Ahmed from Purnea while the Congress has nominated Thomas Hansda from Rajmahal.
The RJD has fielded Nayana Rana, wife of an accused in the multi-crore fodder scam, as its candidate from Khagaria. The CPI-M, the Congress and the RJD have an electoral understanding in the state.
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