Polling for 15 constituencies in the first phase of the assembly elections will be held on Tuesday. The BJP had not won any seat from these constituencies in the last assembly elections and PDP had just one seat. This time, however, the real contest is being seen between the BJP and PDP. They had won three seats each in the parliamentary elections.
The BJP is riding high on the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has talked about equal treatment and inclusive growth, catering to the aspirations of the Jammu and Kashmir regions.
The Congress had won all the six seats of the Doda region in the last assembly elections. National Conference had won eight seats.
Seven cabinet ministers, including four of the Congress, are in the fray this time.
"The Congress will retain all the six seats of the Doda region. The BJP is just day dreaming," said Congress leader and former chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is also from Doda. The party could win last time because of the Azad factor.
This time, the BJP re-strategising its poll strategy and had invested heavily. Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a rally in Kishtwar, the most remote and underdeveloped area of the state.
"This region has hydroelectric potential of 20,000 MW but still there is power shortage and people have to walk long distances to get water," the PM had said and called for bringing in change. The NC had represented Kishtwar since 1987.
Consolidation of Hindu vote - about 45% in Doda, raking up the issue of poor development of the region and bringing in Muslim votes are the key strategies of the BJP here.
The PDP, which almost swept Kashmir in the parliamentary elections, is also a strong contender here at least on two seats.