Chhattisgarh elections: Hours before voting, Congress state VP resigns
In a major jolt to the Congress party, the vice president of its Chhattisgarh unit has resigned from his post hours ahead of the crucial assembly election.
This comes a few hours before the first phase of voting in the state. The first phase of polls on Monday will cover 18 constituencies of eight Naxal-affected districts that include Bastar, Kanker, Sukma, Bijapur, Dantewada, Narayanpur, Kondagaon and Rajnandgaon.
The contest in Chhattisgarh again promises to be a nail-biter as the ruling BJP is facing anti-incumbency, while the Congress is up against the challenge of the Ajit Jogi-Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) tie-up.
Chhattisgarh Assembly polls will kick off what is being seen as a semi-final before the general election that will decide how major political parties such as the BJP, Congress and BSP are positioned for alliances to fight the 2019 battle.
During the campaign for the polls, BJP leaders highlighted how Naxalism, which was at its peak during the Congress rule in the state, was contained during the last 15 years and also the development works taken up by the government.
Top BJP leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Union minister Smriti Irani, campaigned for the saffron party and highlighted various achievements of the Raman Singh government.
On the other side, the Congress accused the BJP of "failing" to control the Naxal menace and referred to the chit fund and civil supply scams. It also targeted the chief minister's son Abhishek Singh over his alleged offshore assets.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi had held five rallies and a road show while campaigning for the first phase of the Assembly polls.
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