Nitin Gadkari confident of BJP forming govt in Chhattisgarh, MP & Rajasthan

Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday exude 100 percent confidence that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will form its government in the current elections in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. While talking about what the BJP government has done and it is doing for the development of Rajasthan, Nitin Gadkari said, “I have toured Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and I am very confident that the BJP will form the Government again in all three states with majority.”

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Elections LIVE : Chhattisgarh Assembly Elections 2018 – 71.93% votes recorded in the second phase

64.8% polls recorded till 5 PM

64.8 per cent polling till 5 pm in second phase of elections in Chhattisgarh says Election Commission. Though polling officially closes at 5, those still in line and have been given slips will vote. Also, bear in mind that data released till 5 pm will have been tabulated a little earlier than that officials say.

In 2013, the total voting percentage was 77.12 per cent. Poll officials estimate final numbers to be around that, or a little higher perhaps.

Voter turnout recorded at 58.47% till 4 pm

At 4 pm, the voter turnout in the second phase of Chhattisgarh Assembly elections stood at 58.47%.

Chhattisgarh records 45% voter turnout till 2pm

Chhattisgarh records 45% voter turnout till 2 pm in the second phase of Assembly elections taking place on Tuesday.

Voter turnout at 25.2% till 12pm

At 12 pm, the voter turnout stood at 25.2% as polling for the second phase takes place Tuesday.

Chhattisgarh Assembly Elections 2018 LIVE: With as many as 1,079 candidates in the fray, over 1.54 crore voters, including 77.53 lakh male, 76.46 lakh female and 877 transgender, will cast their votes today.

 

The second and final phase of the Chhattisgarh Assembly elections began Tuesday for 72 of the 90 seats in the state amid tight security arrangements. With as many as 1,079 candidates in the fray, over 1.54 crore voters, including 77.53 lakh male, 76.46 lakh female and 877 transgender, will cast their votes today. While polling began at 7 am in two of the 19,336 booths, the rest are following the usual time of 8 am to 5 pm. To ensure peaceful polling, over one lakh security personnel have been deployed and extra vigil is being maintained in Naxal-affected districts of Gariaband, Dhamtari, Mahasamund, Kabirdham, Jashpur and Balrampur.

The ruling BJP holds 43 of the 72 seats, with the party sweeping several areas in the Chhattisgarh plains in the 2013 elections. The Congress is confident of consolidating its position and overturning deficits in the plains with farmer anger against the BJP.

There is a third element for the first time in a bipolar state, after Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), former chief minister Ajit Jogi’s Janata Congress Chhattisgarh and the Communist Party of India (CPI) joined hands to contest the polls.

Chhattisgarh Elections : Maoists attempt to scare voters, 2 kg IED triggered near Tumakpak camp

Voting began in 10 out of 18 Assembly constituencies in the first phase of Chhattisgarh elections on Monday under a tight security blanket comprising over 1.25 lakh police and paramilitary personnel. Minutes after Chhattisgarh goes to polls, Maoists attempt to scare voters, 2 kg IED blasted by Maoists near the Tumakpak camp, all safe so far.

LIVE Chhattisgarh polls : 70 per cent turnout in first phase of Chhattisgarh polls: EC

 

 

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70 per cent turnout in first phase of Chhattisgarh polls: EC

56.58% voter turnout recorded till 4.30 pm in the first phase of Chhattisgarh assembly polls: ANI

Break-up of polling percentage by assembly seats: 61.47% in Kondagaon; 63.51% in Keshkal; 62% in Kanker; 58% in Bastar; 49% in Dantewada; 60.5% in Khairagarh; 64% in Dongargarh; 65.5% in Khujji.

47.18% voter turnout recorded till 3 pm, reports ANI

 

In the first phase of the elections in Chhattisgarh, 10.7 percent voter turnout was recorded till 10 am in the 18 constituencies. These 18 constituencies are in the eight Naxal-dominated districts in south Chhattisgarh.

A total of 190 candidates, including Chief Minister Raman Singh from Rajnandgaon, are contesting in this phase. The BJP had lost 12 of these 18 seats in the last polls in 2013.

Nearly one lakh security personnel have been deployed in the Naxal-affected districts going to polls in the first phase in Chhattisgarh on Monday, amid the threat from Maoists who have called for a boycott of the elections.

On the eve of the polls, a sub-inspector of the Border Security Force (BSF) lost his life when Naxals detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) in Kanker district while a Maoist was gunned down in an encounter in Bijapur district.

Voting will be held on Monday in 18 seats spread over eight Naxal-affected districts in the state.

Naxal outfits have given calls for boycott of the election and executed over half-a-dozen attacks in the last 15 days, three of them major ones which left 13 people dead including a cameraman of national broadcaster Doordarshan who was covering the election campaign.

According to police, escorting polling parties to their destinations and bringing them back after the polls pose challenges to them in the Naxal hotbed.

“Around one lakh security personnel, including central paramilitary force, have been deployed to ensure peaceful polling in the first phase,” Chhattisgarh’s Special Director General (anti-Naxal operations) D M Awasthi told PTI.

All counter measures have been taken to thwart attempts by Maoists to disrupt the poll process, he said.

A total of 650 companies (roughly around 65,000 security personnel), including of paramilitary forces like the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), the Border Security Force (BSF), the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and other state forces, have been sent by the Centre for poll duty, he said.
These units are apart from the paramilitary personnel and 200 companies of state forces already engaged in the anti- Maoist operations in Chhattisgarh, Awasthi said.

He said around 650 polling booth parties were airlifted by helicopters on Saturday to remote areas while other teams were being sent by road on Sunday.

Choppers of the Indian Air Force and the BSF were pressed into service for the purpose, he said.

A total of 650 companies (roughly around 65,000 security personnel), including of paramilitary forces like the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), the Border Security Force (BSF), the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and other state forces, have been sent by the Centre for poll duty, he said.

These units are apart from the paramilitary personnel and 200 companies of state forces already engaged in the anti- Maoist operations in Chhattisgarh, Awasthi said.

He said there are inputs of Naxals planning to plant IEDs to target security men. “Therefore, a hawk eye was being kept on roads in such areas,” the official said.

Awasthi said forces that have arrived from other states have been advised to avoid using any road unless it has been sanitised by “road opening parties” (ROPs) or subjected to a de-mining exercise to detect and clear IEDs.

Security men have also been asked to avoid patrolling on foot as Naxals are known to place iron spikes to inflict injuries, he said.

They have also been asked to maintain extra caution and sanitise polling booths and other premises in sensitive areas, he said.

In the last 10 days, over 300 IEDs were recovered from the Bastar region and Rajnandgaon district by security forces, he added.

Another state police official said as many as 198 polling booths have been relocated in the eight districts going to polls, in view of the Maoist threat and convenience of locals.

The highest number of 76 polling booths were shifted in Bijapur, followed by Sukma-40, Kanker-25, Dantewada-21, Narayanpur-18, Rajnandgaon-12, Kondagaon-four and Bastar- two, the official said on condition of anonymity.
Drones have been deployed in sensitive areas to track the movements of Naxals as they might target polling personnel on way to the booths, he said.

Police have been asked to maintain a strict vigil on the borders with Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.

Due to the Naxal threat, polling in 10 constituencies – Mohla-Manpur, Antagarh, Bhanupratappur, Kanker, Keshkal, Kondagaon, Narayanpur, Dantewada, Bijapur and Konta – will start at 7 am and end at 3 pm.

In the other eight seats Khairgarh, Dongargarh, Rajnandgaon, Dongargaon, Khujji, Bastar, Jagdalpur and Chitrakot the polling time will be 8 am to 5 pm.

On November 8, four civilians and a CISF jawan were killed when Naxals detonated a bus with an IED in Dantewada district.

Before that on October 30, three police personnel and a cameraman of national broadcaster Doordarshan were killed in a Maoist attack in Aranpur area of Dantewada.

On October 27, four CRPF personnel were killed and two others injured after Maoists blew up their bullet proof bunker vehicle with an IED in Bijapur district.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.

Chhattisgarh elections: BJP relies on Raman Singh, Congress on anti-incumbency and Ajit Jogi on the third front

Chhattisgarh polls are again about its Chief Minister Raman Singh who for 15 years has dominated the state’s scene. It is also about Singh’s ‘frenemy’ leader Ajit Jogi and his never-ending battles with the Congress.

This time Jogi has formed a ‘third front’ by joining hands with Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party, which could be a big stumbling block for the Congress’ bid to unseat Singh’s government. Jogi asserts he is fighting to end the BJP’s rule but his detractors think that he is again bailing out Singh.

Nevertheless, a rejuvenated Congress under Rahul Gandhi hopes to cash in on what it sees as a strong anti-incumbency mood among the electorate. It thinks Jogi and his Janta Congress Chhattisgarh (JCC) are on the decline because their role is seen as spoilers preventing change.

A third factor that remains in the background, particularly in certain hill areas, is the role of Maoists whose waning influence is punctuated by intermittent deadly attacks. The Maoists are not just against the elections. They have put up posters, directly threatening people against voting for the BJP.

Chhattisgarh has an assembly of 91 seats. It goes to poll on November 12 when the first phase of voting will take place for 18 seats, 12 of which are located in the Naxalite-hit Bastar region and Rajnandgaon. The second phase, which will cover the remaining seats, will take place on November 20.

Singh admits that it is not easy for him and the BJP. However, he feels that the people will still vote for his leadership and party because they have seen changes under his tenure. He sees disarray in the Congress camp though he won’t treat Jogi’s threat to play the kingmaker lightly.

Jogi is not contesting the elections himself, preferring to campaign for his third front. Earlier, he had announced that he would contest against Singh in the latter’s home constituency of Rajnandgaon. Later he backed out.

In the 2013 polls, the vote share between the BJP and the Congress was less than 1 percent. While the BJP got 41.04 percent of the total votes, the Congress polled 40.29 percent, but could only secure 39 assembly seats. The BJP got 49 seats and one each was won by the BSP and an independent.

The narrow margin of victory five years ago has made the Congress more hopeful of breaking the BJP’s winning streak this time.

Jogi thinks that his alliance partner, the BSP, can eat into the votes of the BJP as well as the Congress in some pockets to give his front a decent number of seats for a key role in the post-poll scenario if the December 11 results present a hung house.

Interestingly, Singh, unlike the Congress, is not treating the Jogi-Mayawati alliance as a non-starter. “The BSP has a 4-5 percent votes and Jogi has 2-3 percent votes. If they add up to 5 or 6 percent votes, there will be impact on around 30 constituencies,” he said in a recent interview to a media house.

The Congress is focusing sharply on the distress of farmers, claiming that days of Singh’s magic as ‘Chawal Baba’ (the miracle maker who ensured rice to poor under a successful Public Distribution System) are over. The Congress also harps on what it calls the lack of development under the BJP, denouncing the latter’s claim of vikas as all hype and no substance.

However, dismissing the talk of tremendous voter fatigue working against him, Singh has held that “the anti-incumbency that is talked about now was said in 2013 as well. But people think that change has taken place in 15 years — a new Chhattisgarh is being built…”

All the parties concede that Singh’s achievements cannot be dismissed as mere claims because the state has made considerable progress though some social indicators are still on the lower side.

Many leaders believe the key to retaining or capturing power in Raipur depends largely on who wins in the Bastar division, which also goes by the Maoists’ description as the Red Zone.

In the 2013 polls, the BJP won the elections but lost its hold in the region even as the Congress gained an upper hand. Of the 12 seats in the region, the Congress grabbed eight seats while the BJP mustered the remaining four seats. The saving grace for the BJP was that it won in other regions.

Since then, Singh’s government has undertaken a lot of development work in Bastar. In his pre-election interviews, the CM has asserted that “there are some patches where they (Maoists) have influence, but the people of Bastar are with the government on the path of peace and development. The development work in Bastar is because of people’s faith (in administration). We have laid roads in Dantewada, Sukma, Bijapur, (where earlier) people could not dream of it. Big interstate bridges have been built on Andhra Pradesh and Odisha border. This has changed the economy of the area. (There have been) medical colleges and irrigation… I believe the people are with us”.

That brings us to the next question: will Raman Singh remain merely a leader of Chhattisgarh?

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in 2014, Singh’s name was among those who were thought to have been sounded out for eventually shifting to the Centre. Perhaps, once the Chhattisgarh polls are over, Singh may move away from the state politics — as the BJP needs to harness new faces and younger lot of leaders for its future in the state. This shift might happen after the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.

“Mayawati For PM, I Will Be Chief Minister Of Chhattisgarh”: Ajit Jogi

“I have always believed that a non-Congress, non-BJP coalition will have a majority in 2019,” Ajit Jogi said

 

King in Chhattisgarh, kingmaker in 2019. Congress rebel Ajit Jogi has no doubt about his role in the coming election in Chhattisgarh and the national polls early next year. “We have made an alliance with the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and the Left. It has decided that I will be chief minister,” said Ajit Jogi, who served as the first chief minister of Chhattisgarh after it was carved out of Madhya Pradesh in 2000.

As for prime minister, Mr Jogi was equally emphatic that BSP leader Mayawati is most suitable for the top job.

“I have always believed that a non-Congress, non-BJP coalition will have a majority in 2019. It will be decided then (who will be PM) but I personally believe Mayawati deserves it as the first Dalit, a woman, as a politician from Uttar Pradesh and as a four-time chief minister,” Mr Jogi, 72, said.

Mr Jogi has been an Indian Police service (IPS) and Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer. He became a Rajya Sabha member in 1986. After around three decades in the Congress, he quit in 2016 after being sidelined by the party. Weeks later, he formed his own party.

The Congress, which failed to seal a pact with Mayawati in months of alliance talks, fears that its rebel leader and his son will dent the party’s chances in the state polls. The party had eyed an easy victory over the BJP, which is seen to face anti-incumbency after three straight terms.

Mr Jogi has boasted that his alliance took shape in just a few hours of discussion with Mayawati.

Elections for the 90-seat Chhattisgarh assembly will be held in two phases on November 12 and 20.

 

 

 

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.

BSP hopes to play kingmaker in Chhattisgarh

Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) hopes to win more than a dozen out of the 35 seats it is contesting in Chhattisgarh assembly election in alliance with the former chief minister Ajit Jogi-headed Janta Congress Chhattisgarh (J) and play a role in formation of the next government.

The party has deputed several senior leaders to supervise its campaign for the election which will be held for 90 seats in two phases on November 12 and 20, said BSP functionaries.

“Apart from Rajya Sabha member Ashok Siddarth, the party has deputed several leaders such as former Uttar Pradesh ministers Ambika Chaudhary and Lalji Verma, Ajay Bharti and Bhim Rajbhar to personally monitor the election campaign in this small state,” said a BSP functionary, who is camping in Chhattisgarh.
“As per our assessment, there are high chances of formation of a coalition government in the state. So, if we win at least 15 seats, none can ignore our role in the formation of the next state government,” he said.

BSP members said the party has fielded seven candidates in Janjgir-Champa area. “Janjgir, a Lok Sabha constituency which accommodates eight assembly seats, is the most important destination of the BSP in this election in view of its old association with the BSP founder Kanshi Ram who had contested his first general election from here,” said a party member, who did not wish to be identified.

The assembly segments under Janjgir are Akalatara, Janjgeer-Champa, Sakti, Chandrapur, Jaijepur, Pamgarh, Bilaigarh and Kasdol.

In the first phase, the BSP expects to put up a good show in constituencies such as Dongargarh, Donargaon, Keshkal , Kanker and Kondagaon. “We will put up a good show in these constituencies which will go to polls in the first phase of elections,” said the party functionary cited earlier.

Disclaimer: RSS has been taken from their official website.