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BJP ahead in Araria, Bhabua; RJD in Jehanabad

BJP ahead in Araria, Bhabua; RJD in Jehanabad

The results are expected to be declared by afternoon.

This is the first electoral battle in the Bihar since Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who also heads the JD (U), walked out of the alliance with the RJD and the Congress and joined the BJP-led NDA past year.

Araria Agriculture Production Market Committee has been made the polling station for Araria Lok Sabha seat.

Gorakhpur/Patna: Counting of votes for bypolls to three Lok Sabha seats - Phulpur and Gorakpur in Uttar Pradesh and Araria in Bihar - began at 8 am on Wednesday. Phulpur bypoll results 2018: Samajwadi Party's Nagendra Pratap Singh Patel leading by 9924 votes with 87,272 votes, BJP's Kaushlendra Singh Patel second with 77,348 votes after eight round of counting.

Latest update: The race is tight in Araria, with RJD in the lead with 59,259 votes and BJP trailing with 57,850 votes.

In a major relief for RJD, its candidate Sarfaraz Alam has regained the lead in Araria Lok Sabha seat by over 14,000 votes, while the party was already leading in Jehanabad. Bihar Chief Electoral Officer Ajay V Naik said polling was held peacefully in the three seats.

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Bihar bypolls are being seen as a litmus test for Chief Minister Nitish Kumar after he pulled out of the state's Grand Alliance and joined the BJP.

The contest in Araria is mainly between RJD's Sarafaraz Alam, Taslimuddin's son, and BJP's Pradip Singh, who had won the seat in 2009 and finished runner-up in 2014.

Araria Lok Sabha constituency comprises Assembly segments of Narpatganj, Sikti, Jokihat, Forbesganj, Raniganj and Araria.

PM: The bypoll of two Bihar assembly seats has both main contenders evenly poised with BJP leading in Bhabuaand RJD leading inJehanabad. The party gave a ticket to Yadav's son Kumar Krishna Mohan.

For the BJP, the election is a prestige issue for chief minister Yogi Adityanath who represented the Gorakhpur Lok Sabha seat five times in a row till he took over as chief minister in 2017.

Rinki is the widowed wife of Anand Pandey, the former elected MLA of the constituency.