Bhopal, Oct 15 (UNI) Nineteen candidates remain in the fray for the October 30 by-election to Balaghat district's Lanji assembly constituency after five independent nominees pulled out of the contest today -- the final date for withdrawal of candidature -- Election Office sources said.
The key contest is between the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party's Ms Dhareshwari Devi Bhatere and the main opposition Congress' Bhagwat Bhau Nagpure, an ex-MLA. October 12 was the last day for submitting papers.
Others trying their poll fortune included Lakhanpal Bakde (Gondwana Ganatantra Party), Kankar Munjare (Janata Party), Budhram Devgade (Bharatiya Janshakti), A K Siddharth (Republican Party of India) and 11 independents.
The byelection was necessitated by the death of BJP MLA and former minister Dileep Bhatere whose wife is the saffron party nominee. Counting is scheduled for November 3.