Voting for the first phase polls began in Chhattisgarh on Monday morning from 7 am under a tight security blanket comprising over 1.25 lakh police and paramilitary personnel.
As part of the first phase of polling, voting is progressing in 10 out of 18 Assembly constituencies. "Polling in nine constituencies of Bastar division and one in Rajnandgaon district has begun from 7 am and will conclude at 3pm, while in the rest of the constituencies the polling time is from 8am to 5 pm," a poll official said.
Around 190 candidates will seek their fortune in the first phase in which around 31,80,014 voters will exercise their voting right.
The polling in Chhattisgarh is going on under the shadow on Naxal threats. As a warning, on the eve of the polling day, Naxalites had made a series of killing in various parts of the state. Polling time in 10 constituencies -- Mohla-Manpur, Antagarh, Bhanupratappur, Kanker, Keshkal, Kondagaon, Narayanpur, Dantewada, Bijapur and Konta -- is from 7 am to 3 pm, due to the Naxal menace.
Among the prominent candidates who will try their electoral luck are Chief Minister Raman Singh, state ministers Kedar Kashyap (Narayanpur) and Mahesh Gagda (Bijpaur), as well as BJPs Kanker Lok Sabha MP Vikram Usendi (Antagarh).
In the first phase, the prestige of nine sitting Congress MLAs -Manoj Singh Mandavi (Bhanupratappur), Mohan Lal Markam (Kondagaon), Lakheshwar Baghel (Bastar), Deepak Kumar Baij (Chitrakot), Devati Karma (Dantewada), Kawasi Lakhma (Konta), Girwar Janghel (Khairagarh), Santram Netam (Keshkal) and Daleshwar Sahu (Dongargaon) is at stake.