Electioneering comes to a close for 65 HP Assembly seats

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Shimla, Dec 17 (UNI) The three-week-long electioneering for 65 assembly seats in Himachal Pradesh came to a close this evening with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh winding up the Congress campaign by addressing meetings at Bilaspur and Palampur and BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate L K Advani holding rallies at Jawali and Shimla.

The campaign which was marred by inclement weather and intense cold wave conditions prevented the political parties from canvassing two to three days following snow in the mid and lower hills and widespread rains in the lower areas of the state.

A few meetings of AICC president Sonia Gandhi and BJP president Raj Nath Singh were cancelled due to bad weather and rescheduled.

National Congress leaders, including Prime Pinister, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, and BJP leaders L K Advani, Rajnath Singh, Sushma Swaraj, Murli Manohar Joshi and Yashwant Sinha, BSP supremo Mayawati, Lok Janshakti Party's Ram Vilas Paswan intensively campaigned for their party candidates.

A major highlight of the electioneering was 100 km road show by Congress's general secretary Rahul Gandhi who made public appearance for the first time in Himachal.

The polling for all the 65 constituencies would be held on December 19 in the second phase while counting of votes would be taken up for all the 68 constituencies on December 28.

The polling for three tribal constituencies had already been held on November 14 last.

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