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BJP surprises in Chhattisgarh; party ahead in 54 seats, Congress leads in 34

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Raipur: The BJP appeared upsetting ruling Congress’ applecart in Chhattisgarh, forging ahead in 54 of the 90 assembly seats, while the grand old party led in 34 seats, as per latest information available with the Election Commission.

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In Patan, Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel of Congress was leading over BJP’s Vijay Baghel by 164 votes after four rounds of counting of votes. There will be 18 rounds, a poll official said.

Chhattisgarh Home Minister Tamradhwaj Sahu was trailing in Durg Rural seat by 1,365 votes against BJP's Lalit Chandrakar after first round of counting of votes.

State Congress chief Deepak Baij was behind by 518 votes against BJP's Vinayak Goyal in Chitrakot seat.

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Chhattisgarh assembly speaker Charan Das Mahant was also trailing in Sakti seat by 897 votes against BJP's Khilawan Sahu.

State minister Guru Rudra Kumar, an influential SC community leader, was trailing in Nawagarh seat by 660 votes against BJP's former minister Dayaldas Baghel.

In Kawardha seat, minister Mohammad Akbar was trailing by 1,534 votes against BJP's Vijay Sharma.

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Chhattisgarh minister Shivkumar Dahariya was trailing in Arang seat by 1,700 votes against BJP's Guru Khushwant Saheb.

In Korba seat, minister Jai Singh Agrawal was trailing by 837 votes against BJP's Lakhanlal Dewangan.

In the 90-member Chhattisgarh assembly, the Congress has 71 members, BJP 13, JCC (J) 3 and BSP 2 while one seat is lying vacant.

Counting of votes in elections to the 90-member Chhattisgarh assembly started at 8 am on Sunday, with security personnel maintaining a strict vigil in counting centres in the state's 33 districts, including those affected by Left Wing Extremism (LWE), a poll official said.

The elections were held in two phases on November 7 and 17. Voter turnout stood at 76.31 per cent.

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