Nagpur News: The month-long campaigning in ended Tuesday, as the region votes April 10 in the Lok Sabha election.
As many as 201 candidates from various political parties are in the fray for the 10 Lok Sabha seats in the region that was hit by farmers suicides, drought and floods last year, followed by unseasonal heavy rains and hailstorms which ravaged huge tracts of farmland.
Around 1.65 crore voters shall exercise their franchise to select candidates from the Congress, Nationalist Congress Party, Bharatiya Janata Party, Shiv Sena, Bahujan Samaj Party, Aam Aadmi Party and a host of other local outfits, plus independents.
Nagpur constituency is virtually houseful with 33 candidates, prominent among whom are sitting seven-term Congress member Vilas Muttemwar, former BJP president Nitin Gadkari and AAP state leader Anjali Damania.
On the other hand, Akola has only seven contestants from the main parties.
The other constituencies are Ramtek, Bhandara-Gondiya, Chandrapur, Akola, Amravati, Buldhana, Wardha, Gadchiroli-Chimur and Yavatmal-Washim.
Other prominent names in the fray include NCP leader and Union Heavy Industries Minister Praful Patel, former union minister and Congress general secretary Mukul Wasnik and two state Congress ministers, Shivajirao Moghe and Sanjay Deotale.
Prakash Ambedkar, grandson of Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar, is contesting from Akola, while former NASA consultant Balasaheb Darade is fighting as independent from Buldhana supported by social activist Anna Hazare.
Model-actress Navneet Kaur-Rana is the NCP candidate from Amravati fighting against BSP’s realtor Gunvant Devpare.
Top leaders from all parties, including Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi and NCP president Sharad Pawar, campaigned aggressively to woo the electorate.
BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi also campaigned here thrice, besides Shiv Sena’s Uddhav Thackeray and BSP’s Mayawati.