Cong top guns to blaze campaign trail in Chhattisgarh

Sonia Gandhi. PTI File photo

The Congress brass, including Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, are among 40-star campaigners who will canvass for the party in Chhattisgarh, which will vote in three phases between April 11 and April 23.

The Congress is hoping to end the poll victory jinx in Chhattisgarh, where the BJP always has had an upper hand.

In the 2014 general elections, the Congress had won only one out of total 11 seats.

"Other prominent leaders who will hit the hustings are former prime minister Manmohan Singh, PL Punia, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mukul Wasnik, Raj Babbar, Anand Sharma, Randeep Surjewala and Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel," said state Congress spokesperson Shailesh Nitin Trivedi on Tuesday.

State ministers and party leaders will also campaign for candidates.

"Rahul Gandhi had extensively campaigned in the state ahead of the 2018 assembly elections, which greatly helped the party in recording a landslide victory," he said.

In that election, the Congress won 68 out of 90 seats, ending the 15-year rule of the BJP.

Polling will be held for Naxal-hit Bastar (ST) constituency in the first phase on April 11.

Three seats, namely Mahasamund, Rajnandgaon and Kanker (ST) will vote in the second phase on April 18.

Remaining seven seats--Raipur, Durg, Bilaspur, Raigarh (ST), Korba, Janjgir-Champa (SC) and Surguja (ST) - will vote in the last phase on April 23.

Both the Congress and the BJP have declared candidates for the 11 constituencies.

The BJP has been winning 10 out of 11 seats in Chhattisgarh since 2004 general elections. 

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