Raghubar Das ahead in Jamshedpur East, his party struggles in Jharkhand
Raghubar Das first won the seat in 1995 and kept the seat in the next four elections. Das, who was the BJP’s surprise pick for the chief minister’s post after the 2014 state elections, had secured 61 per cent votes.Updated: Dec 23, 2019 11:52 IST
Chief Minister Raghubar Das is leading over independent candidate Saryu Roy, his former cabinet colleague who had rebelled against the Bharatiya Janata Party to contest against the party’s presumptive chief minister from a seat he has won five times.
Das has secured 42 per cent of the votes counted till 11.30 am and has retained a clear lead over Saryu Roy who has polled 36 per cent votes.
Raghubar Das first won the seat in 1995 and kept the seat in the next four elections. Das, who was the BJP’s surprise pick for the chief minister’s post after the 2014 state elections, had secured 61 per cent votes.
Das might well win the seat that he has never lost. But Saryu Roy’s presence in his backyard, however, was said to have impacted the chief minister’s ability to focus on the BJP’s campaign in the state that he was leading. Roy in his campaign had focussed on corruption in the BJP government and not much development in the constituency despite having a CM.
Roy’s candidature meant that Das had to be campaign for almost every evening in the constituency.
He used to take out a bike rally in the constituency, which is considered a BJP bastion in the state. Roy had shifted from Jamshedpur, from where he had been the saffron party’s legislator for more than two decades.
That Hemant Soren, the face of the opposition’s grand alliance led by Jharkhand Mukti Mocha, had extended his party’s unconditional support hadn’t made Raghubar Das’ task any easier.
The Congress, which had been allotted the seat by the three-party alliance, had fielded its national spokesperson Gaurav Vallabh, from the seat. He is polling about 6 per cent votes, a shade better than the 8 per cent of candidate from Babulal Marandi’s Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik).
Jamshedpur mostly has migrant voters with a huge population of people from West Bengal, Bihar and Chhattisgarh. They have been BJP’s traditional voters as other major parties such as JMM were considered pro-tribal.