POLITICS
11/12/2018 3:35 PM IST | Updated 12/12/2018 1:37 PM IST

Chhattisgarh Chose Congress But Who Will Be The CM?

T.S.Singh Deo, the leader of opposition in the outgoing state assembly is currently the top contender for the CM post.

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T.S Singh Deo

The Chhattisgarh unit of the Congress is set to witness one-upmanship for the chief ministerial post as the party has won more than two third seats in the state assembly.

The Congress won 68 seats out of total 90 seats in Chhattisgarh state assembly.

T.S.Singh Deo, the leader of opposition in the outgoing state assembly is being considered the top contender for the CM post.

However, many in the party are pushing for Tamradhwaj Sahu's name who is the head of the Congress's national OBC cell and an MP from Durg Lok Sabha seat.

Sahu was asked to contest this election at the last moment from Durg rural constituency of Chhattisgarh and is leading with more than 11000 votes according to early trends.

Deo, a scion of Sarguja's royal family, is leading by over 10000 votes from Ambikapur constituency in Sarguja district.

Chhattisgarh Congress president Bhupesh Baghel and senior leader Charandas Mahant are other hopefuls for the post of the CM.

READ: The Congress Is Winning Chhattisgarh, But Infighting Had Almost Ruined Its Chances

However, Baghel's powers were curtailed by the central leadership on the eve of the election as he was accused of conspiring to implicate senior party leaders in sex scandals.

Baghel had also asked some Congress candidates to withdraw their nomination against the wish of the party's central leadership.

"T.S.Singh Deo is the frontrunner as he is a politician with a clean image and doesn't carry any baggage. He led the Congress in state assembly efficiently in last five years and funded the party when it was facing tough times after losing the third consecutive election in 2013. He campaigned hard but was disappointed when CDs of Baghel surfaced. He is a gentleman of Congress. If Congress wants to consolidate its hold over Chhattisgarh and repeat this performance in Lok Sabha election, it doesn't have much choice apart from Deo," a Congress leader from Raipur told HuffPost India.

However, some Congress sources pointed out that if the party decided to go ahead with an OBC face then Sahu will get the post.

Congress president Rahul Gandhi was instrumental in curtailing powers of Baghel just before elections which indicate that the Congress leadership might not consider him to lead the state.

Senior Congress leaders including Deo, Baghel, and Sahu are likely to visit Delhi on Wednesday to discuss government formation with the Congress leadership.