Raipur, Oct 30 (IANS) Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh Thursday hit the road to spearhead the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) bid to retain power in next month's two-phased elections for the 90-member assembly of the mineral rich state.
'The state has witnessed major developments during the BJP regime and I don't think the people have any reason to throw out my government,' Singh told IANS.
'I seek the people's blessings. The BJP government is a must for all round and speedy development of the state,' the 56-year-old doctor-turned politician said here before leaving for Rajnandgaon, 75 km from here, to begin a string of road shows.
Singh is contesting from Rajnandgaon. The seat is held by the Congress, which has nominated its sitting legislator Uday Mudaliar to take on the BJP veteran.
A little over 15 million voters will be eligible to exercise their franchise Nov 14 and 20. The state has 29 seats reserved for Scheduled Tribe candidates and 10 seats reserved for Scheduled Caste candidates.
'Not only urban pockets but also the state's interiors received heavy investment during BJP regime. Now, three major steel plants are coming up in impoverished Bastar,' Singh, who was sworn in as chief minister Dec 7, 2004, stated.
He was referring to Tata Steel, Essar Steel and the public sector National Mineral Development Corporation Ltd. (NMDC) that are respectively setting up five million tonne per annum (MTPA), 3.2 MTPA and three MTPA steel plants in the insurgency-hit Bastar region.
The first phase of elections will witness balloting in 39 constituencies, including 12 in the Bastar region, while the remaining 51 seats go to polls in the second phase.
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