The second and final phase of Chhattisgarh assembly elections for the remaining 70 seats will be held on Friday and decide the electoral fate of political heavyweights like Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, his deputy T.S. Singh Deo, eight State Ministers and four members of Parliament.
A total of 958 candidates — 827 men, 130 women and one transgender person — are contesting for 70 seats spread across 22 districts. As many as 1,63,14,479 voters — 81,41,624 men, 81,72,171 women and 684 of third gender — are eligible to exercise their franchise at 18,833 polling booths.
Chief Minister Baghel (Patan seat), his deputy T.S. Singh Deo (Ambikapur), Assembly speaker Charan Das Mahant (Sakti), eight State ministers, including Tamrdhwaj Sahu (Durg Rural) and Ravindra Choubey (Saja), are among prominent Congress candidates in the second phase.
From the BJP, State unit chief and MP Arun Sao (Lormi), Leader of Opposition in the assembly Narayan Chandel (Janjgir-Champa), Union Minister of State for Tribal Affairs Renuka Singh (Bharatpur-Sonhat-ST), MP Gomti Sai (Pathalgaon-ST), former ministers Brijmohan Agrawal (Raipur South), Ajay Chandrakar (Kurud) and Punnulal Mohile (Mungeli) are among key candidates for the November 17 elections.