First-phase polling begins in Chhattisgarh

Raipur, Nov 7 (UNI) Amid heavy security arrangements, the first phase of voting commenced in Chhattisgarh on Tuesday and comprises 20 Assembly constituencies including ten in areas severely affected by Leftwing extremism.

Chhattisgarh has a 90-member Assembly. The timings for exercise of franchise are 0700-1500 hrs in Mohla-Manpur, Antagarh, Bhanupratappur, Kanker, Keshkal, Kondagaon, Narayanpur, Dantewada, Bijapur and Konta whereas the limits are 0800-1700 hrs in Pandariya, Kawardha, Khairagarh, Dongargarh, Rajnandgaon, Dongargaon, Khujji, Bastar, Jagdalpur and Chitrakote.

It was officially learnt that of the total 5,304 polling centres, teams for 156 faraway ones were despatched by helicopter on Sunday. Webcasting facilities are available at 2,431 centres.

The fortunes of 223 candidates – including 25 ladies – are being sealed in EVMs by members of a 40,78,681-strong electorate that includes 20,84,675 women.

The ruling Congress and principal-opposition BJP are in an eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation in all 20 constituencies, 19 of which are held by the Congress.

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