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RJD-led alliance races ahead in Bihar

Source: PTI
May 13, 2004 19:39 IST
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The secular alliance led by the Rashtriya Janata Dal raced ahead of the National Democratic Alliance, winning 10 of the 18 seats declared and leading in 13 of the 19 seats from where trends were available till 5 pm.

Of the 18 seats declared, the RJD has won six and Congress and Lok Janashakti Party of Ramvilas Paswan two each. The Janata Dal (United) has secured five and BJP three seats.

Among the prominent NDA casualties was the lone Muslim face in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, BJP candidate from Kishanganj Syed Shahnawaz Hussain. He lost to Mohammed Taslimuddin of the RJD by over 1.6 lakh votes.

Railway Minister Nitish Kumar suffered a stunning defeat in Barh, the seat he had won five times in a row, at the hands of Vijay Krishna of the RJD. Kumar, however, managed to salvage some of his reputation by winning the Nalanda seat by around one lakh votes.

Other prominent NDA casualties included Janata Dal(United) parliamentary board chairman Sharad Yadav. It was RJD president Laloo Prasad Yadav who beat him in Madhepura. Thrice chief minister Jagannath Mishra of the JD(U) lost to Devendra Prasad Yadav of the RJD in Jhanjharpur, and Union minister Hukumdeo Narain Yadav of BJP lost to Bihar minister Shakeel Ahmed of Congress in Madhubani.

NDA convenor and JD(U) president George Fernandes managed to scrape through by a paltry 9,366 votes from Muzaffarpur, winning the seat for a fifth time after nearly 13 years.  He last won the seat in 1991 and then, in 1996, shifted to Nalanda, which he won thrice in a row before vacating it for Nitish Kumar.

Had he not left the seat for Kumar, the railway minister would not have been able to enter the Lok Sabha.

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