Bhopal, Nov 15 (IANS) A high-decibel campaigning led by the star campaigners of both the BJP and the Congress ahead of the November 17 Madhya Pradesh Assembly elections came to an end on Wednesday with the voters across 230 constituencies all set to decide the fate of the nominees after two days.
Both the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress have made a slew of promises to lure the voters in a bid to gain power.
Senior leaders of both parties, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Amit Shah, Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and Mallikarjun Kharge have addressed over 12 rallies.
A total of 2,533 candidates are in the fray for the 230 assembly seats in Madhya Pradesh, where the main contest is between the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress.
As many as 5,60,60,925 voters — 2,88,25,607 males, 2,72,33,945 females and 1,373 third gender individuals — are eligible to exercise their franchise on Friday when single phase voting opens from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 2,049 polling stations in the state.
On the last day of campaigning, Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge, party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Union Minister Smriti Irani and Maharashtra Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis have put in their last-minute efforts to woo voters for their respective candidates.
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav also addressed rallies on the last day.
BJP’s star campaigner, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, paid nine visits to Madhya Pradesh and addressed as many as 14 public rallies after the election schedule was announced
The BJP has been banking heavily on the Prime Minister’s charisma and popularity to retain power.
The campaign saw other top leaders – Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP president J.P. Nadda, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, among others, touring the state and addressing election meetings to drum up support for saffron party nominees in all the 230 seats.
Congress President Kharge, his predecessor Rahul Gandhi, party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, MPCC chief Kamal Nath, former chief minister Digvijaya Singh, among others, addressed public rallies to garner support for their 230 candidates.
The BJP’s campaign was centralised on slogans – “MP Ke Mann Mein Modi”.
The saffron party also tried its best to take an edge by highlighting the completion of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya.
The Congress leadership, on the other hand, focused on the promise of a caste survey and the welfare of Other Backward Classes (OBCs) who constitute around 48 per cent of the state’s population.
The party’s national general secretary Priyanka Gandhi, who led the entire campaign, and state unit chief Kamal Nath focussed mainly on issues like corruption, unemployment, poor governance system and more to corner the BJP’s two decades of rule in Madhya Pradesh.
In 2018, the Congress emerged victorious by clinching 114 seats against BJP’s 109 and formed the government with the help of the Bahujan Samaj Party, Samajwadi Party and Independent MLAs under the leadership of Kamal Nath.
However, Kamal Nath’s regime collapsed in March 2020 after a rebellion by now Union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia and Congress MLAs loyal to him, paving the way for the return of the BJP government headed by Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
The voting for the single phase election for 230 assembly seats will be held on November 17.
The results will be announced on December 3 along with those of four other states – Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Telangana and Mizoram.