Agartala, May 23 (IANS) For the first time, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is on the verge of winning of Tripura’s two Lok Sabha seats, where the counting of votes is nearing completion, poll officials said on Thursday.
In Tripura West, BJP candidate Pratima Bhoumik was leading over his Congress rival Subal Bhowmik by around 2,20,000 votes.
In the tribal reserved Tripura East seat, BJP’s Rebati Tripura was ahead of his Congress rival Maharaj Kumari Pragya Deb Burman by around 1,81,000 votes.
Sitting members of the outgoing Lok Sabha and Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) candidates Sankar Prasad Datta and Jitendra Chaudhury, who won the Tripura West and Tripura East seats by a margin of 5,03,486 and 4,84,358 votes respectively in the 2014 elections, managed the third positions this time.
The BJP, which secured 6 per cent of votes in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, is likely to get more than 50 per cent of votes this time, according to vote count trends.
The saffron party wrested power in the state for the first time in the 2018 Assembly polls, which it contested in alliance with the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT). With this win, the BJP also delivered a humiliating defeat to the Left parties after 25 years.
However, in these Lok Sabha elections, minor ally IPFT fielded candidates to both the seats defying BJP’s repeated appeals. Both the candidates are likely to forfeit their deposits after a poor show.
Thirteen candidates, including a woman, are in the fray from Tripura West, while 10, including two women, are contesting from Tripura East.
Re-polling was done in 168 of the total 1,679 polling stations in Tripura West on May 12, after reports of rigging in the first phase of voting held on April 11. Polling for the Tripura East seat was held on April 23.