A few hours remain to conclude the counting of votes in the key Madhya Pradesh elections, the BJP and Congress were neck and neck in a close contest.
As the Exit polls predicted last week, a tight race and a difference of just a few seats between the two parties in the state, where the BJP is seeking a fourth straight term in power, and the Congress is attempting to wrest power after 15 years. Now both Congress and BJP lead equally in 110 seats each in 230 member assemby.
As the neck and neck fight continues, both parties are working on plan B if they do not cross the majority mark on their own. The Madhya Pradesh assembly has 230 seats and a party needs 116 to win a majority and form government.
The focus a day before counting had turned to smaller parties such as BSP and independent candidates. and senior leaders in both parties confirmed on condition of anonymity that they were working on permutations and combinations to finalise plans to ensure they could get their support to form government if required.