The Telegraph
Thursday , May 22 , 2014
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Huge poll blow to Opposition

Agartala, May 21: Much more than the expected massive victories of the Left Front candidates in Tripura, the outcome of the polls has confirmed — if any confirmation was ever required — that the fragmented Opposition in Tripura stands comprehensively decimated in the polls.

Apart from the more than six-lakh vote margin in both the seats, the CPM candidates earned huge leads in all the 60 Assembly segments comprising the two Lok Sabha seats. Similarly, in the 2009 polls, the Left Front candidates, who had won both the seats by margins of 2.5 and 2.95 lakh votes, had led in all 60 Assembly segments of the state.

According to data released by the state election department, while CPM candidates led by huge margins in all 60 Assembly segments, including 10 represented by the Congress in the Assembly, the Opposition Congress could secure second position in only 47 Assembly segments.

Trinamul, which had begun its journey with much fanfare and had two rallies addressed by Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, could secure second position behind the Left Front and ahead of the Congress in only 10 Assembly segments in the West Tripura parliamentary seat.

Interestingly, the BJP which was never expected to fare well in the polls because of lack of organisation, secured second position ahead of the Congress and Trinamul in three Assembly segments in East Tripura (ST) seat. These three segments are Dharmangar, Baspasha and Jubarajnagar in Dharmanagar subdivision of North Tripura. Apart from this, the Left Front candidates secured a whopping 64 per cent of the total valid votes in the Lok Sabha elections.

The Opposition Congress was left gasping with only 19 per cent of total valid votes, Trinamul with 16 per cent and the BJP with only 11 per cent.

The newly formed Tripura Gramin Vikash Congress (TGVC) that had created such a big hullabaloo over alleged “rigging” in the election performed poorly as its president and former Congress MLA Subal Bhowmik secured a paltry 2,740 votes in the West Tripura parliamentary seat while his party’s nominee in East Tripura (ST), Basu Mog, secured even less.

Jamatya minister

Young CPM legislator Naresh Jamatya is all set to become the minister for forest, rural development and industry, replacing Jiten Chowdhury in the Left Front cabinet.

Chowdhury, a senior indigenous leader and minister for more than two decades, had won from the East Tripura (ST) Lok Sabha seat. He had won by a record margin of over five lakh votes and tendered his resignation to chief minister Manik Sarkar yesterday, opening the ministerial slot.

Sources in the CPM said the matter had been decided by the CPM state secretariat, the highest policy-making and executive body of the party.

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