New Delhi: After the month-long vociferous campaign trail coming to an end on Saturday, the poll-bound states of Maharashtra and Haryana are all set to go to assembly elections on October 21 (today). Heavy security arrangements are in place for these two states.

Maharashtra Assembly Election2019:

While the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance is eying to capture the power once again for a second consecutive term, the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party alliance, on the other hand, is leaving no stone unturned to draw voters’ attention to come to power in the state after wandering in the political wilderness for five years.

In all, 3,237 candidates are in the fray for the polls to the 288-seat Maharashtra Assembly. Of the total candidates, there are only 236 women and the remaining 3,001 are male candidates. Among all the candidates, the BJP has announced 164 candidates, Sena 126, Congress 147, NCP 121, MNS 101, BSP 262, VBA 288, CPI 16, CPI(M) 8, Other Registered Parties 604 and the remaining are 1,400 Independent candidates.

The prominent candidates among them are Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Shiv Sena’s Aditya Thackeray. From Congress, the big-shot is former union minister and former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, while from NCP, the prominent face is Ajit Anantrao Pawar. Other major contenders in the fray are Vijay Namdeorao Wadettiwar from the Congress and Dhananjay Munde of the NCP.

It is an electoral debut for Rohit Pawar, grand-nephew of NCP President Sharad Pawar from Karjat-Jamkhed seat in the state.

As part of the preparations, over 966,661 polling stations have been set up in the state, while 135,021 number of VVPAT EVMs will be used for the polls in the state.

For security reasons, over three lakh security personnel and Central forces have been deployed in the state to ensure incident-free voting. Moreover, three helicopters and a number of drones will also be used in Naxal-affected Gadchiroli district in the state.

Haryana Assembly Election2019:

On Monday, the electoral fate of 1,169 candidates will be sealed in the EVMs for the 90 Assembly seats in Haryana. Of the total candidates, 1,064 are males and 105 are females. The polling will start at 7 AM and will continue till 6 PM.

In the state, the assembly poll is witnessing a multi-cornered contest among BJP, Congress, Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) and Jannayak Janta Party (JJP).

While a maximum of 25 candidates is contesting from Hansi Assembly constituency, a minimum of six candidates each from Ambala Cantt and Shahabad assembly constituencies are fighting the polls.

Of all contesting candidates, 90 candidates are from the BJP, 87 from the BSP, four from the CPI, seven from the CPI-M, 90 from the Congress, one from the NCP, 81 from the Indian National Lok Dal, 375 are Independent and 434 are other candidates for the polls.

The BJP has fielded three sportspersons — Babita Phogat (Dadri), Yogeshwar Dutt (Baroda in Sonipat) and Sandeep Singh (Pehowa) — besides TikTok artist Sonali Phogat (Adampur).

In the polls, all eyes will be on which party the Jat community, which constitutes nearly 25 per cent of the state’s population, will vote.

As part of the preparations, over 130 companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed in different districts of the State.

“A total of 19,578 polling stations have been set up in the State, out of which 2,987 vulnerable and 151 critical polling stations have been identified. Apart from this, special security arrangements have been made at these polling stations,” Joint Chief Electoral Officer Inder Jeet told ANI.

To strengthen the security further, over 40,000 state police personnel, over 13,000 paramilitary personnel and more than 20,000 Home Guards and Special Police Officers have also been deployed in the state for smooth conduct of the polls.