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Close race in Bihar as votes are counted in crucial Assembly elections
New Delhi, November 10, 2020
The race for the 243-member Bihar Legislative Assembly appeared to be closer than predicted by the exit polls, with the Opposition Mahagathbandhan (MGB) (Grand Alliance), led by the RJD, and the ruling NDA, comprising the JD-U and the BJP, engaged in a tight contest as counting of votes in the crucial elections progressed today.
While some of the exit polls had forecast a big win for the MGB, which also includes the Congress and the Left parties, the early trends after about two hours of counting, showed that the MGB was ahead in 112 seats while the NDA was leading in 110.
The MGB had taken an impressive early lead but the gap between the two sides narrowed as counting of votes progressed.
Counting of votes began this morning in the Bihar Assembly elections as well as in bye-elections for 58 assembly seats in 11 other States.
Counting of votes has also begun in the bye-election to the Valmiki Nagar seat in the Lok Sabha from Bihar.
The counting exercise began at 8 am, with postal ballots taken up first. Most of the results are expected to be out by this evening.
In Bihar, as many as 414 counting halls have been set up in 55 counting centres in 38 districts of the state. The numbers are slightly higher this time in view of the social distancing norms and other protocols in place due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Elaborate security arrangements have been made across Bihar to ensure peaceful counting.
Polling for the Bihar elections was held in three phases on October 28, November 3 and November 7.