Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is holding a roadshow in Nagpur on the last day of campaigning ahead of the Assembly elections in the state.Earlier on Friday, addressing a rally in Mumbai, PM Narendra Modi said that he is "witnessing more enthusiasm in the Maharashtra Assembly elections than that seen during the Lok Sabha polls."Modi slammed the Congress over its stand on Article 370 during his rally in Haryana earlier on Friday“Demonetisation and ‘Gabbar Singh Tax’ have destroyed small and medium enterprises,” Rahul Gandhi said in Haryana on FridayThe Election Commission of India has announced a ban on exit polls from 7 am to 6:30 pm on 21 OctoberThe 288-member Maharashtra Assembly and the 90-member Haryana Assembly will be going to polls on 21 October, and the results will be out on 24 October(The Quint will no longer be on WhatsApp, owing to changes in its policies regarding news publishers. You can now get the latest news updates on our Telegram channel. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram.)Senior Congress leader Bhupinder Singh Hooda, on Friday, said the “anti-people” BJP government in Haryana will be ousted after the 21 October polls as people have made up their mind to bring back the main Opposition party to power.The Haryana Congress Legislature Party leader said the “false promises” made by the Bharatiya Janata Party have been exposed before the people.Maharasthra CM Devendra Fadnavis, Shiv Sena’s Eknath Shinde and NCP leader Ajit Pawar were among the prominent Maharashtra politicians who filed nominations for the October 21 Assembly polls on Friday, the last day to submit the papers.Fadnavis, the first BJP chief minister of the state, filed his papers from the Nagpur South-West constituency.Despite differences, the BJP and Shiv Sena share the "common thread" of Hindutva and will retain power in Maharashtra after the 21 October Assembly polls, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Friday.Addressing a joint press conference with Sena president Uddhav Thackeray, Fadnavis said the 'Mahayuti' alliance comprising BJP, Sena and other parties will get an unprecedented victory in the elections.Fadnavis said Aaditya Thackeray, son of Uddhav Thackeray, will win the Worli seat by polling the highest number of votes.He added that he will ask all rebel BJP candidates to withdraw from the poll arena in the next two days.To a query on why some senior leaders, including Cabinet ministers were not fielded by the BJP, Fadnavis said, "Nobody has been dropped, they have only been reassigned responsibilities."Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Shiv Sena's Eknath Shinde and NCP leader Ajit Pawar were among 3,754 candidates who filed nominations for the 21 October Maharashtra Assembly polls on Friday, the last day for submitting the papers.In all, 5,534 candidates have filed nominations across Maharashtra for the election.According to the Election Commission, highest number of candidates - 135 - filed nominations in Bhokar Assembly seat in Nanded district.The least number of nominations, a mere four each, were received in Mumbai's Mahim and Sewri constituencies. Fadnavis, the first BJP chief minister of the state, filed his papers from Nagpur South-West.Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that there is no ‘big brother’ in BJP-Shiv Sena alliance and the alliance will get over 200 seats in Maharashtra Assembly polls.(Source: PTI)Candidates fielded: N Adam from Solapur Central, JP Gavit from Kalwan, DL Karad from Nashik (W), Vinod Nikole from Dahanu, J Mali from Shahada, S Khandare from Partur (W), K Bhavar from Shahapur, K Narayanan from Andheri (W).(Source: ANI)Two nomination forms filed by an RPI (Democratic) leader as candidate of the Congress-NCP-led alliance of Opposition for Maharashtra Assembly polls was rejected here on Saturday.Ramesh Gaikwad, who was contesting on Congress' symbol, had left a part of the nomination form blank, an election official said here. Gaikwad had filed two nominations, one as independent and another as candidate of the Congress-led alliance, from the Aurangabad West seat.(Source: PTI)Congress candidate Ashish Deshmukh, had raised objection over the notary stamp dated 28 December 2018 on nomination affidavit of CM. Nagpur south-west election authority has dismissed the objection.For nearly 30 years, the three Lals — Chaudhary Devi Lal, Bansi Lal and Bhajan Lal — ruled Haryana by turns after the state was carved out of Punjab in 1966, enjoying immense clout.At least ten of their family members are contesting the 21 October assembly polls in the state amid declining influence of these clans over the last 15 years.(Source: PTI)Mumbai City Collector Shivajirao Jondhale on Friday issued orders to stop sale of all kinds of liquor and for closure of all liquor shops from 19 to 21 October, and on 24 October, reported ANI.Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Monday said his son taking a plunge into electoral politics does not mean he is retiring, and expressed confidence that a Sena worker would one day become the state's chief minister.In an interview to Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana', he claimed his party put a check on the 'Modi wave' in the 2014 state Assembly polls, but maintained there was no point in a discussion now on why they parted ways with the BJP at that time.This time, the Sena is contesting on 124 out of the total 288 constituencies in alliance with the BJP, which has nominated candidates for 150 seats. Rest of the seats will be allotted to smaller allies from the BJP's quota."One day, a Shiv Sainik would become the chief minister of Maharashtra, it is a promise I made to my father and Sena founder late Balasaheb," Uddhav Thackeray said in the interview, a part of which was released on Monday.The Congress and NCP on Monday released a joint manifesto for the upcoming Maharashtra Assembly elections.The alliance of Shiv Sena and the BJP is in trouble in Maharashtra’s Kankavli, where the Sena has decided to field its own candidate, reportedly to protest against the BJP giving a ticket to former Sena leader Narayan Rane’s son.Irked by the BJP’s move, the Sena has reportedly given an AB form to party leader Satish Sawant to contest against Nitesh.Addressing a rally in Maharashtra ahead of the Assembly elections, Home Minister Amit Shah lauded PM Modi for abrogating Article 370, saying he worked for integrating Jammu and Kashmir with India."PM Modi formed the OBC commission, which was not done by previous governments in the last 70 years," Shah was quoted as saying by PTI.Maharashtra Navnirman Sena Chief Raj Thackeray inaugurated his party's election office in Kothrud assembly constituency in Pune on Tuesday, 8 October, according to PTI.Thackeray will kick off his party's campaign for the upcoming Maharashtra assembly elections with a public meeting at Saraswati Vidya Mandir in Pune on Wednesday.Thackeray had a discussion with NCP leaders Vandana Chavan and Ankush Kakade on Tuesday, MNS sources said.The NCP has announced support to MNS candidate from Kothrud Kishore Shinde, against state BJP Chief Chandrakant Patil.Union Home Minister Amit Shah attacked the Congress for its stand on Article 370 and also took on the party over criticism of the “shastra pooja” performed on the first Rafale aircraft acquired by the country.“Congress leader Rahul Gandhi opposed scrapping of Article 370. I want to ask Rahul to make it clear whether he is in favour or against the scrapping of Article 370,” the BJP president said at a poll rally in Haryana’s Kaithal, referring to the abrogation of the special status for Jammu and Kashmir.“The Congress has to oppose whatever BJP does,” he said.Congress leader Rahul Gandhi will campaign in Maharashtra on 13 and 15 October, to hold rally in Mumbai on 13 October.26 Shiv Sena corporators and around 300 workers of the party sent their resignation to the party chief Uddhav Thackeray citing their 'unhappiness over the distribution of seats' for the upcoming Maharashtra elections, ANI reported on Thursday, 10 October.Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday, 10 October, hit out at the Congress and NCP for "opposing" the NDA government's move to abrogate Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir.Addressing a rally at Jat in Sangli district to campaign for the BJP for the upcoming Maharashtra Assembly polls, Shah said, "Rahul Gandhi, Sharad Pawar should make it clear if they favour scrapping of Article 370."Under Modi's watch, the national security has strengthened and the entire world now knows that "10 enemies will be killed if one Indian jawan is martyred," he said, apparently referring to the Balakot air strike after the Pulwama terror attack.The BJP on Thursday, 10 October, expelled four rebels who are contesting against the official nominees of the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance in the 21 October assembly elections, according to PTI.Charan Waghmare (Tumsar-Bhandara district), Geeta Jain (Mira-Bhayandar, Thane district), Balasaheb Ohwal (Pimpri-Chinchwad) and Dilip Deshmukh (Ahmedpur-Latur district) have been expelled from the party, a BJP release said.Santos Janhate, who was Palghar district general secretary, is contesting as an independent candidate after quitting the party, the release said.Addressing rallies in Maharashtra's Sangli and Solapur districts, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday, 10 October, alleged former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh made more foreign trips than Modi, but the latter made more impact, according to PTI.Unlike the Mahmohan Singh-led UPA regime, there is a change in the way world perceives India now, Shah said, and credited Modi for bringing about the change.Shah also said infiltrators will be made to leave the country and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) will be implemented for the purpose.Three candidates of Worli constituency in Mumbai’s Maharashtra namely Abhijit Wamanrao Bichukale, Mahesh Popat Khandekar and Vishram Tida Padam have been served notices under relevant section of Representation of the People Act for not submitting their daily expenditure to the returning officer, reported ANI.The Maharashtra unit of Congress on Thursday, 10 October, suspended former MLA Sevakbhau Waghaye and Ramratan Bapu Raut for contesting against the party's official nominees, PTI reported.Waghaye is contesting from Sakoli in Bhandara district and Raut is contesting from Amgaon in Gondia district, the party said in a statement.Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis hit out at Congress on Thursday, 10 October, in Pimpri-Chinchwad and said, “Today Congress' situation is such that their leader Rahul Gandhi went to Bangkok as he knows they aren't going to win. Situation of Sharad Pawar is 'aadhe idhar jao, aadhe udhar jao aur bache hue mere piche aao,’” ANI quoted Fadnavis as saying.Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address nine rallies, including one in Mumbai on 18 October, for Maharashtra Assembly polls slated for 21 October, Union Minister Smriti Irani said on Friday.On 13 October, PM Modi will address rallies in Jalgaon and Sakoli (in Bhandara district), she said. On 16 October, he will address rallies in Akola, Panvel in Navi Mumbai and Partur, she said, adding that the PM's rallies in Pune, Satara and Parli will be held the next day.On October 18, the prime minister will hold a rally in Mumbai, Irani informed.NCP president Sharad Pawar on Friday criticised top BJP leaders, including Amit Shah and the prime minister, for repeatedly using his name in campaign speeches in poll-bound Maharashtra and said they must speak about issues related to economy and farmers.The top issue on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Shah and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis's campaign agenda is ‘Sharad Pawar’, he said.Without naming Shah at a poll rally, Pawar reiterated the ‘jail’ jibe, saying those who were ‘inside’ are now running the country's administration, but added he has no complaint as one has his/her rights in democracy.The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Friday released its manifesto for Maharashtra Assembly polls slated for 21 October and promised to “re-engineer Maharashtra which has been reduced to a failed state”.The party is contesting 24 of the 288 Assembly seats in the state.Maharashtra AAP co-convener Kishore Mandhyan said the 32-page manifesto, titled 'Aapla Maharashtra, Ananda Maharashtra', aims to bring about a political culture without money and muscle power.Expressing confidence that the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance would once again come to power in Maharashtra, Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Friday said his party wants to make farmers debt-free.Shiv Sena's manifesto for assembly polls will be released on Saturday, Thackeray said, adding, "The Sena aims to make farmers debt-free, rather than making them avail loan waiver."Praising the Modi government's crop insurance scheme and the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana, he said he would make every effort to provide six free gas cylinders per year to those in the `extremely poor' category.Haryana has got 10 additional companies of Central Paramilitary Forces to better maintain law and order during the forthcoming assembly election, a senior police officer said on Friday.With this, the total number of central security forces deployed in the state went up to 130.The Union Ministry of Home Affairs has allocated two companies each of the CRPF and SSB, one of CISF and five companies of Karnataka IRB for the polls, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Navdeep Singh Virk said.Congress leader Rahul Gandhi will campaign for the party in Haryana and will address a public meeting in Nuh on 14 October, sources said.Gandhi will address the meeting in the afternoon and will reach Nuh in southern Haryana by road from Delhi, they said.Gandhi is also campaigning for the party for the Maharashtra assembly elections on 13 and 15 October.The meeting was finalised after consultations with party leaders of the state, reported PTI.Shiv Sena, which is contesting 124 seats in the Maharashtra Assembly election as part of its alliance with the BJP, released its manifesto, which promises to provide full meal at Rs 10 and make farmers debt-free, among other things.However, despite Sena's opposition to the felling of trees in Aarey Colony in Mumbai for a Metro car shed last week, the manifesto does not make any mention of this issue, reported PTI.The manifesto was released by party president Uddhav Thackeray and his son and Yuva Sena chief Aaditya Thackeray, who is making his electoral debut from Worli constituency in Mumbai.When asked about the Metro car shed project, Uddhav said, “We stand by our decision to oppose the proposed car shed at Aarey Colony.”Aaditya Thackeray had slammed the hacking of trees and termed it as a “shameful and disgusting” act.In the manifesto, the party has promised to set up 1,000 food joints across Maharashtra, where full meal will be made available at Rs 10.It has also promised to slash power tariffs of domestic consumers by 30 percent and also said that it will make farmers debt-free.The Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) released its manifesto for the upcoming Haryana Assembly polls, promising loan waiver for farmers and small traders, crop prices for farmers on the basis of the Swaminathan Commission's recommendations, free power to the farm sector and a slew of benefits for women, unemployed youngsters and traders.The INLD which faced a split following a feud in the Chautala clan, has also promised to bring the state's share of river water after the construction of the Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal and reviving the Dadupur-Nalvi canal project, which was scrapped by the BJP-led government, reported PTI.In the run-up to the 21 October assembly elections, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis blamed NCP supremo and former Union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar and his policies for farmer suicides in the state.Speaking at a rally in Akot tehsil in Akola district in Vidarbha region, Fadnavis termed the issue as Pawar's “sin,” reported PTI.“Farmer suicides are the sin of Sharad Pawar and his government in Maharashtra. It started and increased during your regime,” Fadnavis alleged.NCP chief Sharad Pawar mocked the Shiv Sena for its poll promise to provide a meal at Rs 10, reminding that it had, in the past, introduced ‘zunka-bhakar' centres which later vanished, reported PTI.Ahead of the 21 October Maharashtra Assembly polls, the Sena has promised to provide a full meal to the poor at Rs 10.Contesting the Haryana assembly polls from Punhana seat in Mewat region on a BJP ticket after quitting a lucrative job in London, 27-year-old Nauksham Chaudhary said that she owes her plunge into the politics to her “burning desire” to herald development in the backward region, reported PTI.The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is aspiring to win 75 plus seats in the 90-member assembly, is hoping to bag the Punhana seat in Nuh district of the backward region, traditionally dominated by the opposition.Haryana Congress chief Kumari Selja expelled 16 people from the party for contesting against its official nominees in the upcoming assembly polls.“The Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee has expelled 16 people from the Congress for violating provisions of the party constitution and contesting 2019 Vidhan Sabha elections as rebels,” Selja said in a statement, reported PTI.With only nine days left for the Assembly polls in Haryana, two Congress leaders from the party's unit joined BJP today.Congress treasurer Tarun Bhandari and senior party leader Santosh Sharma joined BJP in presence of Chief Minister Manohar Lal KhattarKhattar tweeted,"Congratulations to Congress treasurer Tarun Bhandari ji and chairman of Haryana Gau Save Commission Santosh Sharma on joining BJP. You took the decision looking at development work done by our government in the last 5 years in the state."Union Minister Prakash Javadekar has predicted a historic victory for the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance in the upcoming Maharashtra Assembly polls.He said that the ruling alliance would break the Congress' record of winning 221 seats in the 288-member House.Addressing a press conference, he said, “Congress had won 221 seats in the state elections once but BJP-Shiv Sena alliance will break that record and complete a historic win,” reported PTI.Prime Minister Narendra Modi will campaign in poll-bound Maharashtra on Sunday to seek a fresh term for the BJP-led government in the state.Modi in a tweet said he will address rallies in Jalgaon and Sakoli.Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a rally in Maharashtra’s Jalgaon on Sunday, 13 October.He spoke on changes brought under the NDA term stating effective revocation of Article 370 in the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir and Triple Talaq among other things.Hitting out at the opposition parties for objecting to the government's decision of abrogating Article 370, Modi said Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh were not just a piece of land, but "crown of India".For the first time after Congress’ defeat in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, party leader Rahul Gandhi addressed a rally in Maharashtra’s Latur on Sunday. While talking about demonetisation and GST, Gandhi alleged the objective of the moves was to take money from the poor's pockets and give it to the rich.Gandhi further claimed that the media, Modi and Shah were working to distract people's attention from core issues.Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a rally in Maharashtra’s Bhandara on Sunday, 13 October. Speaking at the rally, PM Modi said though the world was faced with a "challenging time", India is strong enough to deal with the same.He also said the rural economy was not paid attention to earlier unlike his government has done and added that Rs 25 lakh crore will be spent on the development of infrastructure in villages.PM Modi said in earlier days schemes were worked out on caste and community considerations. "However, for my government, only people matter," he said, adding that farmers, the poor and deprived sections are the focus of his schemes.Union Home Minister Amit Shah held a a road show in Maharashtra’s Shirur on Sunday. 13 October.Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's presence in Maharashtra for the poll campaign means the BJP is going to win "100 per cent", Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said on Sunday.Addressing a poll rally in Umarkhed, Adityanath said Prime Minister Narendra Modi was committed to elimination of terrorism.Praising Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah for abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir, he said the duo has established the concept of 'Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat' (One India, Superior India) through the move."I learnt at Nanded airport that Rahul Gandhi is to address rallies in Maharashtra. Gandhi landing in Maharashtra means the BJP is 100 per cent going to win the election," Adityanath said.Union Home Minister Amit Shahon Sunday heaped praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi for abrogating Article 370, saying the previous governments never had the courage shown by the "man with 56-inch chest" in integrating Jammu and Kashmir with India's mainstream.Addressing an election rally in Maharashtra's Kolhapur district, he said people should ask Congress and NCP leaders, when they come to seek votes, whether they support the NDA government's decision to abrogate the provisions that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir.He targeted Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and NCP chief Sharad Pawar for questioning the government's move to abrogate Article 370.Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, on Sunday, attacked NCP President Sharad Pawar for a certain hand gesture over the former's remark that the Opposition was nowhere in the competition for the October 21 Assembly polls.With Prime Minister Narendra Modi in attendance at the rally, Fadnavis said BJP leaders do not make gestures like 'Natrang' (a 2010 Marathi film centred on a stage actor playing effeminate roles). He said Pawar's "conscience" is weakening as it senses defeat in the polls.Addressing a poll rally in Solapur's Barshi on Saturday, Pawar had hit out at Fadnavis over the latter's remark that the BJP's "wrestler" (poll machine) was ready to fight, but there was no opponent."The chief minister said their wrestler is ready, but there is none (to fight). But you fight with a wrestler, and not with 'such' (making the hand gesture) people," Pawar had said.Congress leader Rahul Gandhi addressed a rally in Haryana's Nuh on Monday, 14 October, for the upcoming State Assembly elections on 21 October.On Sunday, Gandhi had spoken at Maharashtra’s Latur, in what was his first public rally after the party’s defeat in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.Gandhi hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, calling him a "loudspeaker" of big businessmen and accusing him of taking money from the pockets of the poor to give it away to his "rich friends".He also attacked Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar alleging that both the leaders do not talk about the poor."Narendra Modi is the loudspeaker of Ambani and Adani as he only talks about them all day," Gandhi said.Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a rally at Haryana’s Ballabhgarh ahead of the Haryana Assembly elections scheduled on 21 October.He spoke about the government’s decision regarding the abrogation of Article 370 in the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, and that if Opposition wants to reinstate it, they should put it in their manifesto and contest elections.“The Opposition kept lying about One Rank One Pension and never gave benefits of the scheme to citizens,” he added hitting out at the Congress.Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who was to address three poll rallies in Haryana on Monday, was indisposed and therefore, unable to attend the events, PTI reported quoting a party leader said.Shah was to address rallies at Tohana in Fatehabad, Ellenabad in Sirsa and Narnaund in Hisar on Monday."Amit Shahji is indisposed and will not be addressing any of the three rallies," ruling Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Sirsa MP Sunita Duggal told PTI over phone.Union Minister Jitendra Singh on Monday claimed the BJP has "liberated" Haryana from the "stigma of corruption and casteism" it faced under the previous governments, PTI reported.Addressing a series of election rallies at different places in Haryana, Singh said before the Manohar Lal Khattar government took charge about five year ago, Haryana was known more for "scams, embezzlements and land grabbing" allegedly by the members of the ruling families at the Centre and the state.Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday said had India possessed Rafale fighter jets earlier the IAF would not have needed to enter Balakot in Pakistan to hit the terror camps, PTI reported.Addressing a poll rally for BJP's Mira Bhayander nominee Narendra Mehta in Maharashtra's Thane district neighbouring Mumbai, Singh defended performing 'shastra puja' while taking delivery of the first Rafale jet in France recently.Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray on Monday said the state needed a "strong" opposition party which can take the government to task and ask tough questions.Addressing a rally in Pune, Thackeray said," Looking at the condition of Maharashtra, the state needs a strong opposition which will not bend and crawl before the government."Thackeray said the MNS decided to contest elections as it was important to have a presence in the Assembly to raise issues of the people.Congress leader Rahul Gandhi addressed a rally at Maharashtra’s Wardha ahead of the state Assembly elections scheduled on 21 October.He reiterated his comment from the speech he delivered on Monday at Haryana's Nuh and called PM Narendra Modi the "loudspeaker of Adani, Ambani and the rich".He also took a dig at demonetisation and said only the middle class had suffered due to the decision."Did you see Ambani standing at the ATM queue ever?" Gandhi asked the crowd, adding that it was the poor who were affected.GST's aim was to target small businesses and make way for the likes of Adani and Ambani.The Election Commission of India on Tuesday, 15 October, announced a ban on exit polls from 7 am to 6:30 pm on 21 October during Haryana and Maharashtra Assembly elections and by-elections to 51 assembly constituencies of 17 states."General Elections to the LAs of Haryana & Maharashtra and bye elections to 51 Assembly Constituencies of 17 States &23-Samastipur (SC) PC in Bihar & 45-Satara PC in Maharashtra to be held simultaneously. Ban on EXIT POLL from 7am to 630pm on 21st October," Sheyphali Sharan, Spokesperson ECI.As many as 150 women are contesting the Assembly election in Maharashtra, and less than a third of them are from the four main political parties.The ruling BJP-Shiv Sena and opposition Congress-NCP have fielded 46 women candidates for the election for the 288-member house, PTI reported.The overall number of women candidates too is dismal, considering that they account for only 4.6 per cent of the total 3,239 candidates in the fray.The BJP has fielded the highest number of women, 17, including ten who are sitting MLAs. Its ally Sena has fielded seven.Congress has fielded 14 women while NCP has given tickets to eight women.Mumbai City Collector Shivaji Jondhale has issued orders to all workplaces in its jurisdiction including private organisations to give one full day paid leave to all its employees for the purpose of casting their votes in Assembly elections on 21 October, ANI reported.The Congress on Tuesday moved the Election Commission over "raids" on houses of some party employees, alleging that the Income Tax Department was being misused ahead of assembly polls as a "revengeful" arm of the BJP to target political opponents.A Congress delegation, comprising Ahmed Patel, Anand Sharma, Kapil Sibal, Vivek Tankha and Manish Tewari, went to the EC office and submitted a memorandum claiming that unknown officials of the Income Tax Department carried out raids on the houses of Congress party officials and searched the premises illegally and refused to show any identity proof or document.The opposition party requested the EC to intervene urgently and take strong and punitive action against the officials carrying out "illegal raids".Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday hailed Hindutva ideologue Vinayak Damodar Savarkar and said that it is his values that nationalism has been put at the core of nation-building, reported ANI."There are those who insulted Baba Saheb (Bhim Rao Ambedkar) by keeping him away from Bharat Ratna for decades. These are the people who have now insulted Veer Savarkar," he said.Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a rally at Maharashtra's Panvel ahead of the state Assembly election scheduled for 21 October.“The formula of Narendra (Modi) and Devendra (Fadnavis) has been super-hit in the last five years. In times to come, it will take Maharashtra to the new heights of development. When Narendra and Devendra stand together, one plus one becomes 11 and not two,” he said.Earlier in the day, Modi, while addressing a rally in Maharashtra’s Akola, lashed out at those questioning the link between the abrogation of Article 370 and the Maharashtra Assembly polls, telling them to “go drown themselves”.Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday attacked the Congress over Article 370 and accused it of not taking a stand on nationalism because of vote bank politics.Addressing a poll rally at Tigaon near Faridabad, Shah said it was only the Narendra Modi government which abrogated the special status for Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370, making the region an integral part of the country.He said while the BJP and several other parties supported its abrogation, the Congress opposed it.Maharashtra minister Babanrao Lonikar has landed in a spot after being caught on camera purportedly saying he faces no problem in winning the upcoming assembly polls since he has "distributed money", PTI reported.While his party, the BJP, on Wednesday said the veracity of the audio-video clip featuring Lonikar should be established first, the Congress has petitioned the Election Commission of India (ECI) seeking cancellation of his candidature.Lonikar, who holds the water supply portfolio, is the BJP candidate from Partur in Jalna district of central Maharashtra.Former Shiv Sena MLA Harshwardhan Jadhav's residence in Maharashtra's Aurangabad district was vandalised by unidentified persons in the early hours of Thursday after he allegedly made demeaning remarks against Uddhav Thackeray at an election rally, police said, according to PTI.A car and window panes of Jadhav's home were damaged in the attack that took place around 1.30 am, a police official said. His wife and two sons were present inside the house at the time of the incident.Rebel Shiv Sena leader Vishal Dhanawade along with around 300 party workers resigned from the party, yesterday. Dhanawade is contesting as an independent candidate from Pune's Kasba Peth constituency after he was denied a ticket by Shiv Sena.Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a public rally in Satara, Maharashtra. “Satara is very important for me, even more important than tirtha-yatra (pilgrimage) for me,” he said.“In the last 5 years, our government has brought our Armed Forces at par with the Armed Forces of other countries. Be it Army, Navy or Air Force, modern weapons are a part of our Armed Forces today,” he added.Taking a dig at the Opposition, he said, “Those who are in the Opposition today, have questioned the government's efforts taken for the safety of this country. Your excitement and energy will make them lose their sense.”Prime Minister Narendra Modi while addressing a poll rally in Maharashtra's Beed, offered to “make arrangements” for people who want to visit Jammu and Kashmir.In a blistering attack on Congress, he said, “I trust you and your patriotism that you will teach a resounding lesson to those who speak against interests of the country. History will take note of every person who ridiculed the abrogation of Article 370,” reported PTI.He said that Congress provided “oxygen” to anti-India elements.Prime Minister Narendra Modi who is on a trail of campaign rallies, addressed one more at Pune, Maharashtra.He said, “Haven't you felt effect of New India in the past 100 days? Do you see its power?... The entire world can see new-found confidence of New India; everyone can feel the change,” he added.PM Modi said that those who have looted India in the past five years, he has taken them to jail. “Unless they return every penny, this Chowkidar will not sit idle,” he told the crowd.The BJP stepped up its campaign to highlight Veer Savarkar's contribution to India's freedom movement, with its president Amit Shah asserting that had it not been for the Hindutva ideologue the first war of independence in 1857 would have been merely regarded as a revolt, reported PTI.Strongly countering the BJP's nationalism pitch in the Haryana Assembly poll campaign, former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda asserted that it was the Congress which secured Independence and it was under its rule that Pakistan had split into two.Hooda also criticised Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar for his remarks against Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi recently, saying a person sitting in a position of responsibility should make responsible comments.“Anyone making irresponsible statements should be condemned”, he said.In Maharashtra, the Election Commission’s flying squad has seized Rs 2,90,50,000 cash from a person in Mumbai City district, ANI reported.Mumbai Congress President Eknath Gaikwad suspended 15 office-bearers for “anti- party” activities during the ongoing campaign for the upcoming Assembly polls in Maharashtra.A statement from the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee (MRCC) said the decision to suspend the 15 office-bearers till further notice was taken on the instructions of Avinash Pande, the election in-charge for Mumbai.These office-bearers were found engaging in “anti-party” activities during the poll campaign, the statement said.Congress President Sonia Gandhi will address an election rally in Haryana's Mahendergarh on Friday – her first poll campaign address after becoming interim party chief.The public meeting will be held at a government college's sports complex in Mahendragarh in the afternoon, sources said.Rahul Gandhi has already held rallies for the 21 October Assembly polls in Maharashtra and Haryana.Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi has cancelled her rally in Haryana’s Mahendragarh.According to reports by news agency ANI, Rahul Gandhi will now address the rally.Elections to the 90-member Haryana Assembly will be held on 21 October.NCP President Sharad Pawar questioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi's “doob maro” jibe directed at the Opposition in connection with the scrapping of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir and said that there was no need to talk about bringing back the controversial provision.Addressing a poll rally in Nashik’s Niphad in North Maharashtra, Pawar asked Modi why he was daring Opposition leaders to bring back Article 370 of the Constitution after it was nullified by Parliament in August, reported PTI.Election Commission has issued a notice to BJP Mumbai Chief Mangal Prabhat Lodha for delivering a 'provocative speech' during an election rally in Mumbai on 16 October .EC has asked Lodha to reply and clarify on his statement.The BJP city chief allegedly delivered a communally charged speech in the Mumbadevi assembly constituency on Wednesday, 16 October where he called the Muslim dominated area, a factory that supplied firearms during the 1992-93 riots and bomb blasts.Ahead of the Haryana Assembly Elections, former UP & Haryana MLA Kartar Singh Bhadana has joined the Bharatiya Janata Party.Bhadana who was earlier a memner of the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) is a four time MLA and a former Haryana minister.PM Narendra Modi on Friday lashed out at the Congress over its stand on Article 370, saying its statements are being used by Pakistan against India and asked what kind of "chemistry" it shares with the neighbouring country.With the BJP making scrapping of Article 370 in J&K a big poll issue, Modi said parties like the Congress can neither understand sentiments of people nor respect sacrifices made by brave jawans, reported PTI.Addressing a rally in Haryana, his fourth one for the 21 October polls, Modi asked the gathering, “Should I take decisions in national interest or not, should national interest be above politics or not? But the Congress is not able to understand this feeling of people of Sonipat and people of Haryana.” Making a stinging attack on the Congress, he said the party is in "pain" since 5 August when the Centre decided to abrogate special status of Jammu and Kashmir.Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's chopper made an emergency landing in Rewari's KLP College on Friday, due to bad weather, while returning to Delhi from Haryana's Mahendragarh after addressing an election rally. He later left for Delhi by road, reported ANI.Addressing a rally in Mumbai on Friday, PM Narendra Modi said that he is "witnessing more enthusiasm in the Maharashtra Assembly elections than that seen during the Lok Sabha polls.""Mumbai has excellent human capital, innovative venture capital and is a strong financial capital," Modi declared, with Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray present on stage.”(Devendra) Fadnavis completed his five-year tenure as CM as people voted for stability... Be it our central or state government, there is no stain of corruption on them... Those who ruined the banking system are in jail now.”PM ModiNCP chief Sharad Pawar addressed a campaign rally in heavy rain on Friday evening at Satara in western Maharashtra, where a Lok Sabha by-election will be held along with the state Assembly elections on 21 October.During his brief speech, the 78-year-old NCP patriarch, who got completely drenched in the rain, said he committed “a mistake” in selecting candidate for the Lok Sabha earlier this year, but people were now waiting to correct it.The NCP had fielded Udayanraje Bhosale, descendant of Shivaji Maharaj, from the Satara Parliamentary seat. Bhosale, who won the seat, quit the party ahead of Assembly polls and joined the BJP, which has fielded him for the by-election.The NCP has now fielded Shrinivas Patil against Bhosale.Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is holding a roadshow in Nagpur on the last day of campaigning ahead of the Assembly elections in the state.BJP MP Hema Malini on Friday, 18 October, campaigned in Haryana for her party candidates and heaped praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying the country is in “safe hands”.The actor-turned-politician also praised the Manohar Lal Khattar-led BJP government in the state for providing a clean and transparent administration and giving jobs on merit.The Mathura MP addressed poll rallies in Palwal and Mahendergarh, and in the evening, held a road show in Punhana in Mewat region.