Published: Sun, February 18, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Tripura elections: Voting for 59 assembly seats underway

Tripura elections: Voting for 59 assembly seats underway

Election will be held in 59 of the State's 60 seats. Voting, which started at seven in the morning, will end at 4 PM.

Exhorting the people of the state to oust the CPI (M) government from power, the Prime Minister said, "They (CPI-M ) will have to answer about all their wrongdoings in the last 25 years".

The Congress president was here to canvas for his party on the last day of campaigning in the north eastern state ruled by CPI (M)-Left Front for nearly 25 years.

Voting is being held in 59 of the total 60 seats due to the death of the CPI (M) candidate for the Charilam constituency, Ramendra Narayan Deb Barma, six days ago.

The Left is ruling the state for the past 25 years. The Congress has fielded candidates in 56 seats.

Tripura chief electoral officer Sriram Taranikanti said the Election Commission has appointed police observers, general observers and expenditure observers to ensure hassle-free polls.

The BJP, which previously fought elections alone, has aligned with the tribal-based party Indigenous People's Front of Tripura (IPFT) for Sunday's election.

One woman voter in one of the booths at Kumarghat town said, "I will go back home, cook food and return again in the afternoon to cast my vote". While the BJP is contesting from 51 seats, IPFT has been given the remaining nine seats. 30,000 civil officials will be engaged in the conducting of elections.

A total of 297 candidates are contesting the Tripura polls, an increase from the 249 candidates in the 2013 polls.

The polling is taking place across 3,214 polling stations, out of which 49 are being managed by women only.

He also took a dig at the Congress party saying that the "Left and Congress are two sides of same coin who have ruined the state".

The BJP has already formed governments in Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh.

The Manik Sarkar, involved in the race to become Chief Minister for the fifth time, led the CPI (M) campaign and addressed almost 50 rallies in the state.

The Congress' important nominees are state party chief Birajit Sinha, Congress legislator Gopal Roy and former minister Laxmi Nag.

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