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As Congress claims stake to form government in Madhya Pradesh, small parties and independents hold the key

The resurgent Congress made significant gains in the Assembly elections, bellowing out a blow to the BJP in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan too. 

As Congress claims stake to form government in Madhya Pradesh, small parties and independents hold the key

Bhopal: In midnight drama, the Congress party wrote to the Madhya Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel,  staking claim to form the government in the state. However, the governor turned down the approach, stating that appointments would be given only after the final official result is declared by the Election Commission.

While Congress emerged as the single largest party in the state, it is still short of majority with counting underway. The Congress won 114 seats, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won 109 seats. Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) won two seats and Samajwadi Party (SP) won one seat. Independent candidates have won four.

With the majority mark in the state legislative assembly still two seats away, the Congress is expected to approach the four independents in the state or the lone Samajwadi Party (SP) candidate to form the next government in the state.

The state witnessed a nail-biting contest between the Congress and the BJP throughout Tuesday, with tallies of both the parties swinging every passing hour. Nearly 22 hours of counting of votes, the final picture is still foggy, though Congress president Rahul Gandhi said that he was hopeful of a victory in the state.

The party has not declared its chief ministerial candidate and said that decision will be taken by Wednesday. However, party veterans Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia are being seen as strong contenders for the post. 

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has won from his traditional Budhni seat by a margin of 58,999 votes, defeating former Union minister and senior Congress leader Arun Yadav.

The resurgent Congress made significant gains in the Assembly elections, bellowing out a blow to the BJP in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan too. 

The polls' results also saw the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) returning for a second consecutive term with a landslide win and the Mizo National Front (MNF) scripting a spectacular victory dislodging the Congress in its last bastion in the Northeast to return to power after 10 years.