Last Updated: November 06, 2023, 21:31 IST
Chhattisgarh is all set to the polling for the high-octane assembly elections on Tuesday. In the first phase, 20 out of 90 constituencies in Chhattisgarh will witness voting across 5,304 polling booths.
The 20 seats that will go to polls tomorrow include seven districts of the Naxal-affected Bastar division and four other districts — Rajnandgaon, Mohla-Manpur-Ambagarh Chowki, Kabirdham and Khairagarh-Chhuikhadan-Gandai.
The Election Commission of India (ECI) has directed the Chief Electoral Officers (CEOs) to ensure that every polling station is equipped with Assured Minimum Facilities (AMF).
Chhattisgarh Assembly Elections: Facilities at Polling Booths
Proper facilities including drinking water, a waiting shed, a toilet with water facility and lighting arrangements will be in place at all polling stations.
The ECI also said that the polling stations will be set up on the ground floor with a ramp of proper gradient for the Persons with Disabilities (PwD) and senior citizens electors.
It said that wheelchairs for PwD and senior citizens electors will also be provided. The ECI has also directed to ensure proper arrangement of creche with trained attendants for children accompanying the electors.
Chhattisgarh Assembly Polls: Voting and Timings
The Chief Electoral Officer of Chhattisgarh said that the voting will take place in two slots. Ten assembly constituencies each will vote in these two separate slots. The first slot is from 8 am to 5 pm and the other slot is from 7 am to 3 am.
According to the Election Commission’s data, a total of 40,78,689 electors are eligible to vote in the first phase of the Chhattisgarh Election 2023.
As many as (1.6 lakh) 1,64,299 people are first-time voters and are aged between 18 and 19 years.
Key Constituencies in 1st Phase of Chhattisgarh Assembly Polls
There are a total of 223 candidates, including 25 women, in the fray for 20 seats. In this phase, 13 of the 20 seats are reserved for SC/STs.
Some of the key constituencies to go to polls in the first phase include Rajnandgaon, Konta, Kondagaon, Bahnupratappur, Chitrakoot, Kawardha, Keshkal and Narayanpur.
Chhattisgarh Assembly Polls: Key Players in The Fray
Raman Singh: The BJP has fielded former Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh from his seat of Rajnandgaon, which he has retained since 2008. Singh is contesting against Congress leader Giris Devangan.
Kawasi Lakhma: Chhattisgarh minister and Congress leader Kawasi Lakhma is in the fray from the Konta seat. He had won the seat in the 2018 and 2013 polls. The BJP has fielded Soyam Muka against Lakhma from this seat.
Vinayak Goyal: BJP’s Vinayak Goyal is up against Chhattisgarh Congress president and MP Deepak Baij from Chitrakoot seat.
Mohammad Akbar: Congress MLA Mohammad Akbar, who is the Minister of Transport in the Bhupesh Baghel government, is one of the key players in the fray against BJP’s Vijay Sharma from the Kawardha constituency.
Santram Netam: Congress has filed assembly deputy speaker and two-time MLA Santram Netam from Keshkal and the BJP has fielded former IAS officer Neelkanth Tekam.
Kedar Kashyap: BJP heavyweight and former minister Kedar Kashyap is contesting against Congress’s Chandan Kashyap from Narayanpur constituency. Kedar Kashyap won this seat in 2013, but he lost it in 2018 to Chandan Kashyap.