Sharad Pawar, who virtually led the opposition's campaign for the Maharashtra polls, predicted a "change of government" as voting took place in the state today. Amid reports of slow voting, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader also urged voters to exercise their democratic right "without any pressure". "I request everyone to come out and vote in large numbers, this is a celebration of democracy," Sharad Pawar, 78, told reporters after casting his vote.
NCP is contesting on 121 of 288 seats in the Maharashtra Assembly; the Congress is fighting in 147 constituencies. In the months leading up to the polls, both parties have suffered infighting and defections to the rival camp.