Patna: After a tough contest in five phases, it appears that NDA and the grand alliance are locked in a neck to neck contest in the sixth phase in Bihar.
Of the eight seats going to polls on May 12, Siwan, Maharajganj and East Champaran are crucial.
Siwan has become a hot seat as the wives of dreaded gangsters turned politicians — Hina Shahab and Kavita Singh — are locked in a fierce battle.
Hina, fielded by the RJD, is the wife of four-time MP and criminal turned politician Mohammad Shaha-buddin while the JD(U) has given the ticket to Kavita Singh, sitting MLA, and wife of dreaded gangster Ajay Singh.
Convicted in multiple criminal cases including murders, Shahabuddin is lodged in Tihar jail.
After Shahabuddin was convicted and barred from contesting elections in 2007 RJD chief Lalu Yadav chose Hina Shahab but she lost to Om Prakash Yadav of the BJP in 2009 and 2014.
This time the seat went to Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s party under the seat-sharing arrangement.
Sources claim that Kavita Singh is banking on BJP and JD(U)’s core — Rajputs and OBCs voters. Analysts don’t rule out the division in the OBC votes.
In 2009 and 2014, sharp division of votes had helped the NDA. Now, the caste equations have changed after RLSP chief Upendra Kushwaha, Mahadalit leader Jitan Ram Manjhi and Vikasheel Insan Party of Mukesh Sahani have joined the RJD alliance....