The fate of Madhya Pradesh has been sealed and it will be out on Sunday as the counting of votes on 230 constituencies will begin at 8 am.
With exit polls having predicted the Bharatiya Janata Party’s victory, the big question still remains if Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan will make it to the third time in the state. A CNN-IBN, The Week and the CSDS post-poll survey had suggested that the BJP is set to win 136-146 seats, while the Congress is a distant second with just 67-77 . The findings, almost a replica of what happened in 2008 elections, predicted 13-21 seats for other parties.
In the last Assembly elections the BJP had won 143 seats, Congress 71, while others had bagged nine seats. The BSP is likely to score 9 per cent of the share just as it did in 2008, gaining 7 seats.
This year saw the record voter turnout of 70 per cent when the state went to poll on November 25 in 51 districts. 4,64,57,724 people were given the right to vote and hence the decide the fate of 2,583 candidates. Chouhan is contesting from two constituencies - Budhni and Vidisha.
The other prominent candidates from the BJP are state Urban Development Minister and former Chief Minister Babulal Gaur (Govindpura in Bhopal), Forest Minister Sartaj Singh (Seoni-Malwa in Hoshangabad district) and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Narottam Mishra (Datia proper in Datia district).
State Home Minister Uma Shankar Gupta is fighting from Bhopal South-West while Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Gopal Bhargava from Rehli and BJP MP Yashodhara Raje Scindia from Shivpuri.
The Congress candidates are led by Leader of Opposition Ajay Singh, who is contesting again from the Churhat constituency in the Sidhi district. Another prominent Congress candidate this time is Jaiwardhan Singh, the son of party General Secretary and former chief minister Digvijaya Singh. Jaiwardhan is in the race from Raghogarh constituency in Guna district.
The Congress has been out of power in the state since it lost elections in December 2003.