At the stroke of 1pm on December 11, the contest in Madhya Pradesh is as close as it gets, with Congress and BJP neck to neck in their fight to claim power in the state. Five hours after the counting began, trends in the afternoon showed BJP and Congress each leading in 110 seats, with others like BSP and Independents ahead in the remaining 10 seats.
While there are many factors to analyse in the road to determining why the elections turned out the way they have, not just in Madhya Pradesh but also in other states, one profitable line of inquiry would be to see what effect some of the headline leaders had on the voting outcomes. For the BJP, the main contender, as has been the case for the last 5 years, was Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who addressed 13 rallies in the state in a bid to get long-time incumbent CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan re-elected for a fourth time.
At the time of publishing, here's how the BJP is faring in the 13 seats where PM Modi campaigned:
This totals to 9 leads out of 13 constituencies, as per trends.
The situation in Madhya Pradesh remains fluid (meaning the above trends could also change), with the BSP even taking steps to ensure that it's to-be MLAs are accounted for. Mayawati anticipates that her party could be the key to forming a government in the state.
Meanwhile, in other states, the results are more clear. KCR is all set to remain Telangana Chief Minister by completely routing the Congress-TDP 'Maha Kutami'. In Mizoram, the MNF has a massive lead as per trends, with the ruling Congress being reduced to single digits in the 40-seat assembly. In Chhattisgarh, on the other hand, the Congress appears triumphant, holding a significant advantage over the incumbent BJP indicating that the state may change hands for the first time in over a decade. And in Rajasthan too, it is the Congress that is currently on top, though not by the margin that a number of pollsters had predicted. Sachin Pilot has confirmed that he is in talks with a number of independents. All eyes, however, are on Madhya Pradesh.
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