Dehradun | Jagran Politics Desk: The assembly elections in Uttarakhand, scheduled to be held in February or March next year, will be a direct contest between the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress. The BJP, intending to retain power in Uttarakhand, is investing heavily in the hilly state. For this, it has once again turned to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who over the past few days has inaugurated and laid the foundation stone for several development projects in Uttarakhand.

On Thursday, PM Modi laid the foundation stones of projects worth over Rs 17,500 crore, including the Rs 5,747 crore Lakhwar hydropower project. Inaugurating the projects, the Prime Minister also accused successive Congress governments at the Centre and in Uttarakhand of dragging their feet for decades over development projects, forcing people to migrate from their villages in the state.

"Wasn't it sinful on part of those who were in power before us to delay a project like Lakhwar meant to give you electricity, drinking water and irrigate your lands. Would you forget their sin? Will you get carried away by their tall promises," PM Modi was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

Will the BJP be able to retain power in Uttarakhand or not is an interesting question as it has also been difficult to predict the voters' mood in the hilly state. It should be noted that Uttarakhand is one such state where no political party has been able to form a government for two consecutive terms.

However, if the opinion polls are to be believed, then the BJP is all set to rewrite history by retaining power in Uttarakhand. According to a survey by the ABP News-CVoter Battle for the States Tracker, the BJP will likely get around 39.8 per cent votes in the upcoming assembly elections. On the other hand, the opposition Congress will likely get 35.7 per cent votes while the new entrant Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is expected to garner 12.6 per cent votes.

How did BJP, Congress and other parties perform in Uttarakhand assembly elections 2017?

In the previous Uttarakhand elections in 2017, the BJP won 57 seats out of the 70-member legislative assembly. The saffron party received over 23 lakh votes with a 46.5 per cent vote share. The Congress, which was in power in Uttarakhand from 2012 to 2017, won just 11 seats and received more than 16.66 lakh votes with a 33.5 per cent vote share.

Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Akhilesh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party (SP) failed to open their accounts, winning a little over 3.47 lakh and 18,000 votes respectively. Kashi Singh Airy's Uttarakhand Kranti Dal (UKD) had also failed to open its account and received around 37,000 votes.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma