RANCHI: The fate of two former Chief Ministers and a central Minister will be decided in Jharkhand's second phase of polling in the Lok Sabha elections slated for May 6, as campaigning ends on Saturday evening.
On May 6, polling will take place for four Lok Sabha seats -- Ranchi, Khuti, Hazaribagh and Koderma.
All eyes are on Khuti, Koderma and Hazaribagh. First Chief Minister of Jharkhand Babulal Marandi who is also the President of the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajatantrik (JVM-P) party, is fighting from the Koderma seat.
He was elected to the Lok Sabha from Koderma in 2004 and 2009. He was Chief Minister from November 2000 to March 2003. Marandi is the joint candidate of four opposition parties -- Congress, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM), Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and JVM-P -- which have formed a grand alliance in the state.
He is pitted against the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Annapurna Devi who was the RJD's state president and had joined the BJP after the announcement of the polls. In Khuti, the BJP has fielded three-time Chief Minister Arjun Munda against the Congress' Kalicharan Munda.
In Hazaribagh, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha is in a direct fight with Congress candidate Gopal Sahu.
In Ranchi, the fight is interesting as rebel BJP MP Ramtahal Chaudhary is contesting as an Independent against the saffron party's Sanjay Seth and the Congress' Subodhkant Sahay, a former Union Minister. There are 61 candidates in the fray with 65,87,028 eligible voters.