Polling remains slow

Polling began in Madhya Pradesh at a slow pace to elect a new state assembly. Some 37.9 mn voters are eligible to exercise their franchise to elect 230 legislators. Cong and BJP are main contenders.

india Updated: Dec 01, 2003 12:03 IST

Polling began on Monday in Madhya Pradesh to elect a new state assembly. It was slow in the first few hours.

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Some 37.9 million voters are eligible to exercise their franchise to elect 230 legislators in the state.

A total of 2,171 candidates, including 197 women, are in the fray. The main contest is between the ruling Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the main opposition party.

Digvijay Singh will continue as the chief minister if the Congress is able to win the elections for a third time in a row. The BJP has projected Uma Bharati as its chief ministerial candidate.

The Congress has fielded candidates in 229 constituencies and the BJP in all 230 constituencies.

The Samajwadi party has fielded candidates in 161 constituencies, the Bahujan Samaj Party in 160 and the Nationalist Congress Party in 105. There are a total of 878 independent candidates in the fray.

First Published: Dec 01, 2003 11:05 IST