Bypolls for 28 seats have concluded in Madhya Pradesh and all eyes are now on the results in which two tall leaders -- Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia -- have the most at stake.
Nath is eyeing a comeback in the elections to claim the post of chief minister but it is a tough task for him to win all the seats and Scindia has to prove his mettle by winning the maximum seats to be relevant in his new party.
Nath made an appeal to the voters by saying,"Today the opportunity has come to use your vote and support the truth as this by polls are not ordinary election, but will give direction to the state and give a message for clean and honest politics."
Although Nath is a seasoned politician and has decades of experience behind him, not taking Scindia along cost him his government.
Scindia, once close to Rahul Gandhi, has not left any stone unturned and is waiting for an opportunity to claim a larger role in the BJP, his new party. The results will decide his fate in Madhya Pradesh politics because most of the seat where bypolls were held are in the Gwalior-Chambal region, considered a stronghold of Scindia.
Scindia has targeted both Nath and Digvijay Singh in these elections. After casting his vote, he said,"This is a time to make history and vote for progress of the state."
The results may go either way, but the biggest gainer could well turn out to be Digvijay Singh who has ensured his son Jaivardhan Singh, a former minister in the Nath government is the most prominent face in the generation next of Congress leaders in the state.
If Nath wins, Jaivardhan will again be at the centre of politics and even if the Congress loses, Digvijay will get control of the state Congress as Nath may opt for politics at the national level.
The war between the Scindia and Digvijay families has been on since the time Madhavrao Scindia was in politics and now the two families have grown apart and are in different parties.
The revolt by 25 Congress MLAs who left the party in the state brought down the Kamal Nath-led Congress government and led to the by-elections.
The Congress has called the ruling BJP 'traitors' and 'scam-tainted' while the BJP has targeted former Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Kamal Nath for 'misrule' during the 15-month tenure of his government.
The BJP's campaign revolved around the work done during Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's 15-year reign and the transformation of the state since the last seven months after toppling the Kamal Nath government earlier this year.