Assam: Local bodies’ elections
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Panchayats: BJP leads, Cong 2nd, AGP 3rd
BJP continued to maintain its lead in the Assam panchayat polls on Thursday with Congress emerging a close second.
According to the latest figures issued by the State Election Commission, of the 26,808 rural body seats up for election, BJP has won 7,505 so far, followed by Congress with 5,713 and Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) with 1,917. BJP had already won 380 seats uncontested, followed by Congress which won 193 and AGP 28. BJP has been doing well in upper, northern and central Assam and has managed to make inroads into minority-dominated districts in lower Assam. “This is a victory of our government’s pro-people policies,” Ranjeet Kumar Dass, the state BJP chief, said on Thursday. “People across the state rose above the divisive politics of groups with vested interests and chose BJP,” he added.
AGP, which parted ways with BJP for the rural elections after differences over the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, said that it was time for introspection. “We respect BJP’s victory and the mandate of the people... we will assess where things went wrong,” AGP chief Atul Bora said.
Former CM Tarun Gogoi said Congress could have fared better had the ticket distribution been more meticulous. “We had our shortcomings,” he said.
6 panchayat candidates win by coin toss
At least six candidates contesting the panchayat election in Barak Valley won by tossing a coin after they were tied with another candidate. Independent candidate Rajana Begum and Congress’s Idarjaan Borbhuiyan, secured 125 votes each in a constituency in Cachar district. Idarjaan was declared winner after she won the toss, a senior election official said.
Five other candidates — one anchalik panchayat candidate under Lalamukh gram panchayat, three gram panchayat members under Nischintapur and one under Panchgram in Hailakandi — were also declared winners after winning the toss. “The candidates accepted it gracefully without any fuss,” said Hailakandi zilla parishad CEO NKSK Singha.
BJP, AGP take over Hailakandi council
Despite securing majority in the Hailakandi zila parishad, the All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) lost out on formation of the council following a revival of ties between old allies BJP and Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) at the panchayat level.
Farhana Khanam Choudhury of the Rangauti-Nitainagar Zila Parishad Council won the seat in the election held on December 9 as an AIUDF candidate. With six seats, AIUDF had secured majority, followed by BJP (4) and AGP (1). However, Khanam defected to BJP, and with support from the AGP member, formed the Hailakandi zila parishad. Farhana is president of the parishad while AGP’s Hilal Uddin Barbhuiya is the vice-president.