North East

Tripura by-polls: Battle for 2nd spot?

ProMASS, Nov 17, 2016: With the campaigning for bye-polls in Barjala and Khowai Assembly constituencies is coming to an end within few hours, people of both the constituencies are ready to cast their votes on Nov 19. Star campaigners of Trinamool Congress and BJP organized several public rallies and held car shows both in Barjala and Khowai constituencies whereas CPIM’s top level leaders of its State unit completed several rounds of public rallies in areas under both constituencies. For CPI-M, campaign style is strikingly different. It seems local leaders and active supporters are in constant campaign mood. Even after big rallies were organized, CPI-M cadres were seen busy in holding small group meetings, door to door campaigns all along.

Sure about victory in both the seats, CPI-M campaigners are focusing on developmental activities implemented by the State Govt and highlighted several political and social failures of their opponents. Political observers opined, though CPI-M conceded Barjala (SC) Constituency to Congress in 2013 Assembly Polls, this time multi-corner contests in this seat is likely to favour CPI-M candidate. In fact, real contest is between TMC and BJP for securing second spot, said a veteran political analyst.

As far as Barjala seat is concerned which Congress won by a slender margin in last Assembly polls, statistics show Congress garnered 17724 votes while nearest rival CPI-M bagged 17467 votes. BJP secured only 511 votes in that election. Looking at Statistics during last Loksabha Poll results in Barjala constituency reveals, CPI-M secured 18330 votes while Congress bagged 6148 votes – truly far behind in terms of votes gained. TMC got 3825 votes BJP slipped into 4th position after managing only 2731 votes.

On the other hand, in 2013 Assembly Poll CPI-M routed opposition parties with handsome margins in Khowai Constituency. CPI-M candidate Late Samir Deb Sarkar declared winner with 22692 votes. His nearest rival, Congress candidate bagged 13859 votes. TMC did not contest but BJP bagged a meager 232 votes. In Lok Sabha Polls, Left Front candidate secured overwhelming 26382 votes while TMC got 4713 votes only. Congress relegated to 3rd position and bagged 2439 votes while BJP managed 1114 votes.

Importantly, when the whole country was shivering under Modi wave during last Lok Sabha Poll, percentage of votes that Left Front candidates scored increased in Lok Sabha polls in comparison with Assembly Polls. In this backdrop of figures and statistics, Political Observers, more or less sure that CPI-M candidates will win both the seats, are more interested in finding out which party manages securing 2nd spot. While Congress force is waning, can a resurgent TMC beat a new looking BJP under leadership f Biplab Deb and firmly announce its presence in the State as a viable alternative of ruling CPI-M?

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