Along with the Lok Sabha election, Tamil Nadu will also be voting for 18 Assembly constituencies in the state. Apart from Tamil Nadu, voting will also be held in 35 assembly seats and five Lok Sabha seats in Odisha on Thursday.
While by-elections for 18-Assembly constituencies in Tamil Nadu is being held on Thursday, voting for the remaining four seats will be held on May 19. The by-polls to the 22 vacant seats hold great significance for the AIADMK government since as they are crucial to keep the two-year-old Palaniswami government in power and safe.
In Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is seeking re-election for the fifth consecutive term. The BJD president will contest the Odisha assembly polls from two seats - Bijepur and his home turf Hinjili. He has been winning the Hinjili assembly seat in south Odisha in successive assembly elections since 2000.
While Patnaik is contesting on two seats, Congress president Rahul Gandhi has done back-to-back visits to the region to bolster his party's poll prospects. The added efforts of teh BJD and the Congress assume significance in the backdrop of the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) impressive performance in western Odisha in the 2017 panchayat elections.