Lok Sabha polls: Santhal Parganas, North Chotanagpur hold key in Jharkhand

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Jharkhand General Elections 2024 Lok Sabha Elections

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Ranchi: Santhal Parganas and North Chotanagpur regions, which hold a total of eight of the 14 seats in Jharkhand, are significant in the Lok Sabha elections in Jharkhand.


Kolhan region in the southern part of the state, which has the prestigious Jamshedpur seat, besides Singhbhum, is also important in the political landscape of the state.

Lok Sabha polls will be held in the state in four phases on May 13, 20, 25 and June 1. In the 2019 general elections, the BJP emerged victorious in 11 seats, while its ally AJSU secured one seat. Both the JMM and Congress have one seat each.

For the upcoming polls, while the BJP has announced candidates for 11 of the 14 seats, the INDIA bloc is yet to announce its nominees as talks continue among allies, including the JMM and Congress, over seat sharing.


In Santhal Parganas, the saffron party had won Dumka (ST) and Godda seats and lost Rajmahal (ST) to JMM in 2019.

This time, the BJP will not only try to retain the two parliamentary seats it had won in 2019 but also make all-out efforts to wrest the one it lost. The JMM and the Congress will also leave no stone unturned to retain their hold in the region.

Rajmahal, considered a JMM bastion, is one of the seats eyed by the party although seat sharing among allies has not yet been finalised.


Vijay Kumar Hansdak of the JMM had won the Rajmahal constituency in 2019, defeating Hemlal Murmu of the BJP.

This time, the BJP has fielded its former Jharkhand state president Tala Marandi from Rajmahal. Marandi, who had won the Borio assembly seat on a BJP ticket in 2014, had joined the AJSU party in 2019 after being denied a BJP ticket. However, he returned to the BJP in 2022.

In Dumka, the BJP has fielded sitting MP Sunil Soren. He had defeated JMM president Shibu Soren in the 2019 polls by a margin of 47,590 votes.


Sitting MP Nishikant Dubey will seek re-election from Godda. Dubey had defeated JVM-P's Pradeep Yadav by 1,84,227 votes.

The polls in these three constituencies will be held on June 1. A total of 16.82 lakh voters are eligible to exercise their franchise in Rajmahal, while 15.70 lakh people can vote in Dumka and 19.95 lakh in Godda.

Both the ruling JMM-Congress-RJD alliance in the state and the BJP have been aggressively campaigning in the region in a bid to consolidate their position.


North Chotanagpur has a total of five seats, the largest by numbers for any region in the state.

Key among those is the high-profile urban constituency Hazaribag, which was once represented by former Union finance minister Yashwant Sinha and later his son, former Union minister Jayant Sinha.

This time, however, the BJP has replaced Jayant Sinha, a two-time MP and sitting parliamentarian, with local MLA Manish Jaiswal.


Hours before the announcement of his benching, Sinha had requested the party leadership to relieve him from electoral politics via X.

Sinha had in 2019 won the seat by a margin of 4.79 lakh votes, defeating Congress' Gopal Sahu.

The constituency has a total of 19.18 lakh voters, including 9.31 lakh women.

BJP's Hazaribag MLA Manish Jaiswal had defeated Congress' Dr Ramchandra Prasad in the 2019 assembly polls.

Key assembly segments include Barhi (Congress), Barkagaon (Congress), Ramgarh (AJSU), Mandu (BJP), and Hazaribag (BJP).

Union minister Annapurna Devi, contesting on a JVM-P ticket in 2019 from Koderma, will fight from the same seat. She had defeated state BJP president and former chief minister Babulal Marandi by a margin of 4,55,600 votes.

The Hazaribag, Chatra and Koderma seats will vote on May 20 while polling will be held in Giridih and Dhanbad on May 25.

Singhbhum (ST) and Jamshedpur seats in Kolhan region are also significant which both the camps will try to secure.

Geeta Koda, the wife of former chief minister Madhu Koda who was Jharkhand's lone Congress MP before recently joining the BJP, has been fielded from the seat by the saffron party. She had bagged it in 2019 by defeating BJP's Laxman Gilua.

JMM may field state transport minister Dipak Birua in the seat.

In Jamshedpur, the BJP has repeated sitting MP Bidyut Baran Mahto. Mahto had defeated Chief Minister Champai Soren in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls by a margin of 3,02,090 votes.

While the opposition INDIA bloc's final decision is pending, it is likely that the JMM will field its candidate for the prestigious Jamshedpur constituency and may even contest the Singhbhum constituency, party sources said.

Singhbhum, which has a total number of 14.32 lakh voters, will go to polls on May 13, while voting will be held in Jamshedpur, which has 18.41 lakh voters, on May 25.

In the South Chotanagpur region, the battle for Khunti is poised to be interesting as the BJP has fielded Union minister Arjun Munda, who had won the seat in 2019 by a narrow margin of just 1,445 votes.

The constituency has various issues such as human trafficking, illegal opium cultivation, and unemployment. It has 13.12 lakh voters, including 6.67 lakh women.

For the Lohardaga seat, the BJP has reposed faith in its Rajya Sabha MP from Jharkhand, Samir Oraon, whose term is ending on May 3.

He will be contesting the Lohardaga (ST) seat, replacing existing MP Sudarshan Bhagat, whose victory margin in the previous polls was a mere 10,363. Oraon was elected to the Rajya Sabha in 2018.

For the Ranchi seat, the party has fielded sitting MP Sanjay Seth who had defeated Congress' Subodh Kant Sahay by a margin of 2,82,780 votes.

Union minister Arjun Munda has been chosen again from the Khunti (ST) seat which he had won by a narrow margin of 1,445 votes in 2019, defeating Congress' Kalicharan Munda.

Khunti and Lohardaga will go to polls on May 13 while polling in Ranchi will be held on May 25.

Incumbent MP of the BJP, former DGP Vishnu Dayal Ram, will contest the Palamu (SC) seat this time as well. He had won the seat by a margin of 4,77,606 votes in the previous polls.

Voting in Palamu, which has a total number of 22.27 lakh voters, will be held on May 13.