Consolidation of Bengali, tribal votes helped BJP in Tripura

Nagaland also gave a fractured verdict with no party or pre-poll alliance having a majority.

Agartala/Shillong/Kohima: Riding the crest of a Modi wave, the BJP on Saturday demolished the communist citadel of Tripura, winning a two-third majority with ally IPFT and ending 25 years of uninterrupted rule of the CPM-led Left Front.

Though the BJP secured a majority on its own in Tripura, winning 35 seats, Amit Shah said in the national capital that it will form government with ally Indigenous People’s front of Tripura (IPFT), which won eight seats. The CPM-led Left Front could manage just 16 seats.

While the unprecedented consolidation of Bengali and tribal votes was seen as the reason behind the BJP alliance’s triumph, the CPM accused it of using “money and muscle power” to win the elections.

“The BJP used money and muscle power and managed to bring together all anti-Left forces,” CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury said.

Though the ruling Congress emerged as the single largest party in Meghalaya, it failed to secure a majority, winning 21 seats. The party could not open its account in Tripura and Nagaland.

Senior Congress leader Kamal Nath, who was despatched to Shillong to explore ways of forming a Congress-led government, said the party had the support of MLAs necessary to prove majority on the floor of the Assembly.

“Congress being the single largest party should be invited by the Governor to form its government. We will prove our majority any time the Governor asks,” he said in Shillong.

Nagaland also gave a fractured verdict with no party or pre-poll alliance having a majority. The BJP got an informal invitation from NPF leader and Chief Minister T.R. Zeliang to join the new government.

The NPF, is the single largest party in the House with 27 seats. The BJP-NDPP combine has also won 27 seats and are leading in one each.

The NPP of Conrad Sangma, a North-East Democratic alliance partner of the BJP, has won two seats, and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s JD(U) one. If the BJP-NDPP alliance wins the two seats where their candidates are leading, its tally would go up to 32, two more than the magic figure of 30.

The BJP had parted ways with the NPF just ahead of the polls and joined hands with the newly launched NDPP of three-time former chief minister Neiphiu Rio, also an old Naga People’s Front hand.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle with agency inputs )
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