Madhya Pradesh assembly election update: Tough fight between BJP and Congress

New Delhi: The Madhya Pradesh Assembly Election 2018 held on November 28, a total of 74.61% voters had cast their ballot – a jump of around 2% from the previous elections in 2013.

The Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly has 230 seats and voting was held for all of them on November 28.

While the BJP is led by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, MP Congress chief Kamal Nath and senior leader Jyotiraditya Scindia spearheaded the party’s fight in the central Indian state.

The contest in Madhya Pradesh Assembly Elections 2018 is proving to be nail-biting and appears headed towards a photo finish. While the counting of votes is still underway, trends available for all 230 seats in MP Legislative Assembly indicate that both the Congress and the BJP may not end their respective tallies too far from each other. In the Madhya Pradesh Assembly Election 2018 held on November 28, a total of 74.61 per cent voters had cast their ballot – a jump of around two per cent from the previous elections in 2013.

A total of 2,899 candidates were in the fray in Madhya Pradesh. Over 5 crore people were eligible to cast vote in Madhya Pradesh, as per the Election Commission of India.

Track live updates here:

7.50pm: “This is a victory of Congress workers, small traders, farmers. This is a big responsibility for Congress party and we will work on this,” says COngress president Rahul Gandhi.

7.45pm: Congress President Rahul Gandhi arrives at the party headquarters in Delhi.

7.20pm: “Before Parliament election, the polls in five states show it was a mini parliamentary election. My greetings to all the winning parties,” says MK Stalin, DMK president.

7.15pm: Celebrations underway outside Congress office in Bhopal. Congress has won 12 seats leading on 100 seats in the state.

6.45pm: Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik: I congratulate Congress, MNF for their success. It clearly shows the mood of the nation. These states are pre-dominantly agrarian states & BJP govt in the Centre has more or less ignored the Swaminathan report recommendations & loan problems of farmers.

6.10pm: “This is the victory of Rahul Gandhi, our party, workers, people, and the fight against scams. This is the victory of humanity,” says Congress’ Kapil Sibal.

5.10pm: BJP’s Aakash Kailash Vijayvargiya wins from Indore-3 constituency with a margin of 7000 votes.

5pm: “There are many reasons behind BJP’s defeat, proud of being in power & misuse of democratic institutions are some. People from all strata of society are against BJP. This a disaster for them,” says Mamata Banerjee.

4.20pm: With the Congress party sensing that it may emerge as the single largest party in Madhya Pradesh but may not touch the halfway mark, the party has started approaching smaller parties and Independents to secure additional numbers. As per latest Election Commission trends, the party is ahead in 115 seats while the BJP is leading in 105.

PTI reported that Congress leaders have established contact with the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Samajwadi Party (SP), Gondwana Gantantra Party (GGP) and Independents who are leading as per trends. MP Congress president Kamal Nath and party’s campaign committee chief Jyotiraditya Scindia are personally leading the effort, sources said. In fact, Kamal Nath was believed to be in touch with BSP supremo Mayawati and SP chief Akhilesh Yadav.

4.18pm: Congress leading in 114 seats, BJP in 105

4.07pm: Congress leading in 113 seats, BJP in 106

3.57pm: Congress leading in 115 seats, BJP in 105

3.51pm: Minister Antar Singh Arya has lost the election from Sendhwa seat in Barwani district of Madhya Pradesh. Several other ministers in Shivraj Singh CHouhan Cabinet are trailing.

3.33pm: Madhya Pradesh continues to remain on the edge as the count now says: BJP leading in 107 seats, Congress in 113 and others in 10 seats. The tally continues to fluctuate by the minute as more numbers are counted. 12 rounds of counting are still yet to be completed.

3.26pm: Samajwadi Party (SP) candidate Rakesh Shukla wins in Bijawar.

2.32pm: Mandsaur, the hotbed of Madhya Pradesh’s farmer agitation seems to be going in favour of BJP, which is leading from this region.

2.22pm: Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Yadvendra Singh was leading over Congress’s Rakesh Giri by just 224 votes. Singh had secured 17,025 votes by 2:12 pm and Giri 16,801 seats.

2.11pm: Trends at the moment show both Congress and BJP leading in 110 seats each. BSP and a few Independent candidates hold key to government formation in Madhya Pradesh.

2pm: Rajasthan Congress leader Sachin Pilot said the Congress was marching towards victory in Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh and the trend would continue in the future in the rest of India.

1.55pm: BJP is currently leading in 112 seats while the Congress is leading in 108 seats. There are 70 seats with margins less than 5000 seats that can turn the results in anyone’s favour. Some seats even have a margin of less than 2000 seats.

1.45pm: Congress President Rahul Gandhi reaches Sonia Gandhi’s residence, 10 Janpath.

1.45pm: After 10 rounds of counting with 12 more to go, BJP is currently enjoying a wafer-thin lead over the Congress. BJP currently leads in 110 seats as against Congress’s 109 seats.

1.33pm: Both BJP and Congress currently boast of an equal vote share of 41% each. At the moment, BJP is at 108 seats while Congress is at 111. Samajwadi Party, that is leading in 1 seat, has already declared support to Congress.

1.20pm: Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati, who holds the key to the Madhya Pradesh government formation, has asked all her MLAs to rush to Delhi.

1.09pm: National Conference leader and former Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah seems to be having fun watching the election results come in.

1.06pm: In the seesaw that is the Madhya Pradesh result, Samajwadi Party (SP) has now declared support to Congress.

12.58pm: State Sports Minister Yashodhara Raje Scindia is leading from the Shivpuri seat. The BJP leader is a prominent leader in the stae, who is the sister of Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje and aunt of Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia.

12.53pm: Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is currently leading in 8 seats while both BJP and Congress are at 109 seats each. If the results end up with a hung assembly in Madhya Pradesh, Mayawati may come out to become the kingmaker in the Hindi heartland state.

12.50pm: Both camps of Congress and BJP are in touch with Maywati’s BSP in Madhya Pradesh. CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan is personally talking to BSP.

12.40pm: Both BJP and Congress are leading in 109 seats each with others leading in 12 seats.

12.28pm: “I won’t say these are victories of Congress but this is an anger of the people. Self-reflection is needed,”says  Sanjay Raut, Shiv Sena.

12pm: “Nothing is yet clear from the trends. Congratulations to the MLA candidates and the political parties that are winning. But Mahagathbandhan has failed terribly in Telangana,” says Union minister Rajnath Singh.

11.40am: BJP national general secretary and MP from Durg (Chhattisgarh),”We can’t say anything after only first round of counting. We hope to form the government in Chhattisgarh. It’s a very close fight.”

11.38am: BJP is currently leading in 112 seats while Congress is leading in 108 seats.

11.27am: Jyotiraditya Scindia, who spearheaded the Congress campaign in Madhya Pradesh, said he was very confident that the Congress would form the government in the state. Asked about posters being put up that Kamal Nath would be CM, Scindia said: “Lets not put the cart before the horse. Let us wait for the verdict.” He said the trends reflected the people’s desire for a change.

11.20am: 11 EVMs from three districts – Jhabua, Balaghat, Narsinghpur – found on Tuesday morning with mock polls in them. The machines will be taken in for counting in the end as they have both – mock and actual votes – in them.

11.18am: Madhya Pradesh Chief Election Officer VL Kantha Rao says BJP at 102, Congress 112 and others 14.

11.14am: Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is currently leading in seven seats.

11.13am: Madhya Pradesh Congress bosses Kamal Nath, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Digvijaya Singh travelling in one car, headed for the Pradesh Congress office in Bhopal.

11.10am: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the media a few minutes ago even as trends show BJP trailing in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and also Telangana. Modi, however, remained mum on the early trends and only spoke on the upcoming Winter Session of Parliament.

11.05am: Madhya Pradesh Congress chief Kamal Nath says, “These are early trends, but I am fully confident that we will get majority.” Congress is currently leading in Madhya Pradesh in a closely fought contest with BJP.

10.47am: Madhya Pradesh Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia, who is one of the CM contenders in the state, has tweeted a video message for supporters and party workers. Scindia says the mandate is clearly an indication of a turnaround for the Madhya Pradesh Congress.

10.47am: Congress has crossed the halfway mark of 116 seats required to form the government in the 230-member Madhya Pradesh Assembly.

10.22am: Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Narendra Tomar has acknowledged that the support for the NDA has waned. “We shouldn’t be surprised. We have been saying this during the election but BJP is comfortable,” the minister said.

10:15am: PM Modi has called for a meeting of the BJP core group at 10.30 pm to evaluate the results of the five states elections.
10.13am: “These are early trends. We hope to perform well,” says home minister Rajnath Singh.

10.13am: Top BJP ministers are trailing in Madhya Pradesh. These include Narottam Mishra, Ram Pal Singh, Antar Singh Arya, Rustam Singh, Jaibhan Singh Pawaiya and Jayant Malaiya.

10.10am: Madhya Pradesh minister Lal Singh trailing.

10.07am: Congress workers celebrate outside party office in Delhi.

10am: Congress workers break into early celebrations outside Madhya Pradesh Congress chief Kamal Nath’s residence in Bhopal.

9.57am: BJP leading in 109 seats, while Congress is leading in 107.

9.50am: Madhya Pradesh School Education Minister Deepak Joshi is trailing along with PWD Minister Rampal. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is still holding his early lead in Budhni.

9.43am: BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya’s son Akash Vijayvargiya is trailing by 1024 votes in Madhya Pradesh.

9.24am: The Bombay Stock Exchange (Sensex) at 34,458.86, down by over 500 points.

9.12am: Very close contest in Madhya Pradesh. Although early trends show Congress is leading in 65 seats, it is just 5 seats ahead of the ruling BJP.

9.10am: “We’ll definitely form government in Madhya Pradesh & Chhattisgarh. Seeing the early trends coming from Rajasthan, we believe BJP will form a government there as well,” says BJP’s Kailash Vijayvargiya.

8.55am: “It’s too early. Anything can be said only after 12 pm. Leads of only postal ballots have come till now. I am confident that in Madhya Pradesh, Congress will form government. We have favourable situation in Rajasthan & Chhattisgarh also,” says Congress’ Digvijay Singh.

8.48am: Congress workers have gathered outside the party office in Delhi and have started early celebrations.

8.45am: Early trends show a close contest between the ruling BJP and Opposition Congress in Madhya Pradesh.

8.41am: Early trends show Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is leading from his home turf Budhni, a seat he has held for the past few elections.

8.28am: Early trends from 13 seats in Madhya Pradesh show Congress is leading in 8 seats and BJP in 5.

8.06am: As the counting of votes began in Madhya Pradesh, senior Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia expressed confidence about forming the government there. “The government will work to meet the people’s expectations and will strive to usher in an environment of progress and peace in the state,” Scindia said.

8.06am: Counting begins across centres in Madhya Pradesh. Trends will soon start coming in from these centres.

7.56am: Counting of votes across five states to begin within few minutes. Trends will soon start coming in to show how the day turns out for BJP and Congress.

7.13am: Madhya Pradesh Chief Electoral Officer has also directed that there will be no webcasting during the counting of votes. He has said that Wifi will not be used in the counting hall and CCTV cameras will be installed.

6.44am: Outside Old Central Jail counting centre, Bhopal City SP tells ANI: Dedicated teams have been deployed to ensure security. Diversion points put on roads outside centres. There’s a 3-tier security system. Any device that can help communication isn’t allowed inside.

Results for four other states, Rajasthan, Telangana, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram, will also be declared along with Madhya Pradesh.