New Delhi: Samajwadi Party was on Tuesday set to capture power in Uttar Pradesh routing Mayawati's BSP while the Akali Dal-BJP combine shocked Congress by retaining its government in Punjab and Congress managed to hold on to Manipur.
   
The contest in Uttarakhand has gone to the wires with BJP and Congress in a neck and neck race with advantage to the saffron party ruling the state at the moment.
   
Goa has gone the BJP way after it defeated the ruling Congress convincingly to capture power.
   
In the battle royale in Hindi heartland, Mulayam Singh- led SP rode on an anti-incumbency wave to dislodge Mayawati looking to win a clear majority on its own. It has already won 36 seats and was ahead in 183 others in the 403-member Assembly.
   
Mayawati, whose BSP won a majority in the 2007 elections sewing up a rainbow coalition of Dalits, upper castes and Muslims, fared poorly and was reduced to 85 seats. BSP, which won 206 seats last time, has won in 12 seats and was leading in 72 others.
   
BJP, which had 51 seats in 2007, has won five seats and was ahead only in 41 seats while the Congress was ahead in 21 and has won four seats. Congress ally RLD has won one seat and was leading in nine.
   
Rahul Gandhi, who put up a spirited campaign for the party, appears not to have made much impact but still can take solace from the fact that seats for it have gone up marginally up from 22 earlier.
   
The shock for Congress came from Punjab, which it was widely expected to wrest from Akali Dal-BJP combine. The ruling coalition has won 59 seats and was ahead in nine of the 117 seats, ten more than required simple majority.
   
Congress has won 44 seats and is leading in two.

However, the hill-state of Uttarakhand is proving to be a nail-biting finish with the ruling BJP just ahead of Congress by one seat in the 70-member Assembly.
   
BJP has won 13 seats and was ahead in 19 others while Congress has won 11 seats and was leading in 20 others.
   
BJP President Nitin Gadkari expressed confidence that they could retain power by taking the support of Uttarakhand Kranti Dal (P), which is ahead in one seat, and 'others' who have won one seat and were leading in two seats.
   
BSP has won one seat and was ahead in two seats. In Goa, BJP was well on the way to storm to power by winning 16 seats and leading in three in a House of 40. Its ally MGP has won two seats and was leading in one.
   
Manipur came as the only solace for the Congress as it is set to return to power for the third consecutive term.
   
Congress won 29 seats and was leading in four while Trinamool Congress won six seats and LJP one. Naga People's Front had won two and was leading in two.

(Agencies)