Ranchi: Voting for the fifth and final phase of Jharkhand Assembly elections began at 7 am on Friday (December 20), amid the presence of heavy security at the polling booths.

Voting is underway across 16 constituencies in the final phase. Among these are Rajmahal, Borio (ST), Barhait (ST), Litipara (ST), Pakur, Maheshpur (ST), Shikaripara (ST), Dumka (ST), Jama (ST), Jarmundi, Nala, Jamtara, Sarath, Poreyahat, Godda and Mahagama.

In total, 236 candidates, including 29 women, are in the fray in the final phase in which 40,05,287 voters will exercise their right of franchise.

Taking to Twitter, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, "The fifth and last phase of voting in the Jharkhand assembly elections is today. I request all voters to vote in record numbers and join this festival of democracy."

Over 62.4% voter turnout was recorded at 15 Assembly constituencies covering four districts that went to polls in the fourth phase of elections in Jharkhand on December 16.

The third phase of elections took place in 17 Assembly constituencies covering eight districts on December 12. The second phase of elections to Jharkhand Legislative Assembly took place in 20 Assembly constituencies on December 7, while the first phase of voting took place on November 30.

The counting of votes will be held on December 23.