Counting of votes in 5 states on May 2

With elections almost over in all five states — Assam, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Puducherry, the focus is now shifted on the counting day, May 2. Assam went to polls in three phases whereas West Bengal had eight phases. The remaining three states went to polls in a single phase on April 6.

Of all five states, the biggest political battle is said to be in West Bengal, where the BJP is trying to dethrone two-time chief minister Mamata Banerjee. Opinion polls conducted ahead of the polls had predicted an edge for the ruling Trinamool Congress while the BJP was not much behind. The vote difference was about five per cent. In Assam, the BJP-led ruling NDA is trying to retain power by defeating a grand alliance cobbled up with the help of eight parties including Congress and Badruddin Ajmal’s AIUDF. Several opinion polls have placed the ruling coalition ahead of the grand alliance. Tamil Nadu is witnessing a bipolar contest with AIADMK and DMK vying for the top post in the state. As per various opinion polls, MK Stalin’s DMK is expected to defeat the ruling AIADMK. In Kerala, the contest is expected to be between Left-led LDF and the Congress-led UDF. The BJP, too, is trying to expand its footprint in the southern state but whether it succeeds this time remains to be seen.

Puducherry also has bipolar fight with the Congress taking on All India NR Congress of N Rangaswamy. The AINRC, however, has allied with the BJP and AIADMK.