Tripura’s ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist) retained the Amarpur assembly constituency in the by-elections with a wide margin from its closest competitor, the Bharatiya Janata Party, and other regional parties. The main opposition, the Congress party, registered an almost negligible vote share, displacing it from the second to fourth position.
Parimal Debnath won the elections bagging 20,355 votes for the CPI(M) while BJP’s Ranjit Das polled 9,758 votes to emerge second.
The tribal based political party, Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) came in third with their candidate Pabitra Mohan Jamatia bagging 1,623 votes.
“People have faith in the Left Front. Hope, the state government will work to bring further development in the city,” CPI (M) state secretary, Bijan Dhar said.
Despite polling less than half the votes the CPI(M) did, the BJP sounded an optimistic note for the 2018 polls. “The saffron party is the main opposition to the Left Front. The bypolls is the beginning. The BJP will come to power eradicating the Left’s misrule in 2018 polls,” BJP state unit president, Biplab Deb said.
The Congress however faced a sound drubbing, garnering just 1,231 votes of the registered 88 per cent turnout.
“A major vote of Congress was shared by the BJP. The Congress could have gained much better results, if the Congress votes were not shared by the BJP,” party working president Asish Kumar Saha said.
Other local political parties also fared less than well with the Indigenous Nationalist Party of Tripura receiving 146 votes and Aamra Bangalee bagging 149. An independent candidate scored better; Ranajoy Jamatia managed to swing 216 votes in his favour.
The bypoll was held on February 13 after a seat had fallen vacant following the resignation of the Manoranjan Acharjee from the Assembly on December 10 last year. The former CPI(M) MLA was expelled after being accused of sexually assaulting a minor in his party office.