New Delhi: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Sunday accused the Congress party of creating obstacles during the counting of votes. Talking to reporters, he said, “Congress is distressed. Like they first raised suspicion on EVMs and doubted EC, they’ll try to create obstacles at the time of counting too. State BJP chief has discussed this with dist pres and in charges. They’ve been asked to stay calm but be alert.”

He once again asserted that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will form the government. However, according to exit polls projection, the BJP is likely to suffer in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Rajasthan because of severe anti-incumbency. In all these states, the party had been in power for at least a decade.

In Madhya Pradesh, the majority mark is 116 for the 230-seat Assembly. Of the many exit polls, some have given the BJP a majority; others have easily predicted the Congress crossing the majority mark or being a few seats less. Even so, the difference in the number of seats predicted for the two parties isn’t too big.

Notably, Madhya Pradesh went to polls on November 28. The counting of votes is scheduled for December 11. The tenure of the 230-member state Assembly ends on January 7, 2019. The BJP has been in power in the state since 2003 and is seeking a fourth straight term.

The Assembly polls, considered the bellwether for 2019 Lok Sabha elections, will decide the fate of the BJP’s three most prominent chief ministers: Raman Singh, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, and Vasundhara Raje.

The BJP, under Chouhan’s leadership, cannot afford to lose the crucial state to the Congress just six months before the Lok Sabha General Elections 2019. In the current Lok Sabha, the BJP holds 28 seats from Madhya Pradesh against Congress’ three. For both the BJP and the Congress, Madhya Pradesh is a crucial state to gain strength in the Lok Sabha.