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High-Stakes Battle: Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh Vote Today

Today, over 72 million people in the heartland states of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh will vote for 230 assembly seats in the former and 70 seats in the latter, deciding the fate of 3,491 candidates in elections with national ramifications.

This round of assembly elections began on November 7th, with 20 seats in Chhattisgarh and all of Mizoram voting. In Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, the electoral battle is largely between the Congress and the BJP.

Voting began at 7 a.m. on Friday in 64,523 polling stations across Madhya Pradesh. It will end at 3 p.m. in the Maoist-affected districts of Balaghat, Dindori, and Mandla, and at 6 p.m. everywhere else. Anupam Rajan, the state’s chief electoral officer, will monitor voting at every booth from his office in Bhopal, officials said.

Rajan stated that the election commission has arranged for a helicopter and an air ambulance to be stationed in Gondia, near Balaghat. “Over 38,000 polling stations will be monitored via CCTV and webcast.” Runners have been deployed in 464 polling stations located in black zones with no internet or telecommunications connectivity. Every two hours, the runners will visit the connectivity zone to share information about voting,” he said.

There are approximately 200,000 security personnel on the ground. He stated that there are 2,533 candidates running. While the Congress and the BJP have candidates in all 230 seats, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has 183 seats, the Samajwadi Party has 71, and the Aam Aadmi Party has 66.

Shivraj Singh Chouhan met with women in Bhopal on Thursday and said that the love of his sisters will see him through. “I know my sisters will support me,” the CM stated.

Other BJP leaders who visited supporters’ homes included Union Ministers Prahlad Patel and Faggan Singh Kulaste, as well as state cabinet ministers Narottam Mishra, Gopal Bhargava, and Bhupendra Singh.

The Congress, which is attempting to unseat the BJP, issued an affidavit from all 230 of its candidates promising to fulfill all election promises. “I will protect Madhya Pradesh’s soil and will remain committed to a corruption-free progressive Madhya Pradesh until the last drop of my blood,” said the affidavit, which included photos of Rahul Gandhi, Mallikarjun Kharge, and Kamal Nath.

In Chhattisgarh, the second phase of voting will determine the fate of chief minister Bhupesh Baghel, deputy chief minister TS Singhdeo, eight state cabinet ministers, and four members of Parliament.

The Congress wishes to keep its government in the state. There are 44 general assembly seats up for grabs on Friday, 17 reserved for Scheduled Tribes, and nine reserved for Scheduled Castes. According to election officials, 958 candidates are running for 70 seats and 22 districts.

The Congress and BJP are fighting for every seat. The AAP has 44 candidates, the Janata Congress Chhattisgarh has 62, and the Hamar Raj Party has 33. The Bahujan Samaj Party and Gondwana Gantantra Party are running in coalition, with 43 and 26 candidates, respectively.

All 70 constituencies will vote from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., with the exception of nine booths in the Maoist-affected Bindranawagarh seat in Rajim district, which will vote from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Baghel is running from his home constituency of Patan, where the BJP has fielded his distant nephew and party MP, Vijay Baghel. Amit Jogi, the Janata Congress Chhattisgarh (J) state chief and son of former Chief Minister Ajit Jogi, is the third important candidate in the constituency.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the BJP’s election campaign, targeting Baghel for corruption, specifically the alleged Mahadev betting app scam and recruitment controversy. The Congress campaign was built around a slew of welfare programs implemented by the Baghel government for farmers, women, tribals, and Dalits, and accused the Centre of handing over resources to some industrialists.

“Through their respective manifestos, both national parties focused on wooing farmers, women, and young voters.” “The BJP accused the Congress of various scams, and the Congress accused the BJP of using central agencies,” political analyst Harsh Dubey said.

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