The counting for 11 Lok Sabha seats in Chhattisgarh started at 8 AM on Thursday to decide the political fate of 166 candidates. It is expected that final results will be declared by Thursday evening. In Chhattisgarh, the contest is between BJP and Congress.
Exit polls predictions for Chhattisgarh
According to ABP-Nielsen's exit poll, the BJP would win six seats and Congress five. News18-IPSOS exit poll has predicted 7-9 seats for BJP in Chhattisgarh and 2-4 seats for Congress. India Today-Axis My India exit poll has predicted that BJP may win seven to eight seats, while the Congress is expected to get three to four seats in the state. Some exit polls have projected close contest between the Congress and the BJP with CVoter giving 6 seats to the NDA and Jan Ki Baat 5-6 seats.
The state recorded a 66.04% turnout in first phase, 70.31 % turnout in second phase and 70.73% in third phase. Voting was held at 23,727 polling booths, of which 5,625 were in critical areas. The state has total 15,758 service voters. The parliamentary constituencies in Chhattisgarh are - Bastar, Rajnandgaon, Mahasamund, Kanker, Surguja, Raigarh, Janjgir-Champa, Korba, Bilaspur, Durg and Raipur. In 2014, the BJP had won 10 out of 11 seats in Chhattisgarh and one seat was won by Congress.
All eyes will be on Rajnandgoan seat, which was won by former Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh's son Abhishek Singh in 2014. The BJP has not given ticket to Abhishek this time and instead the saffron party has decided to field RSS man Santosh Pandey against Bholaram Sahu of Congress. In Bastar, Dipak Baij of Congress is pitted against senior BJP leader Baiduram Kashyap. Bastar is the bastion of BJP as the party has been winning from this seat since 1998.
The seven-phase Lok Sabha election started on April 11 and concluded on May 19. Counting for all 542 seats (the polling for Vellore was countermanded by Election Commission due to use of money power) is set to take place on Thursday. The outcome of this general election 2019 will choose the 17th Lok Sabha and pave way for the formation of next government.