Tripura Election 2018: Polling begins for 59 out of 60 seats

Tripura Elections Women certainly matter in state politics as 23 women candidates in poll fray

The Left front has been power in Tripura since 1978, except for 11 years (1972-1977 and 1988-1993) when the state was led by Congress. Additional Chief Electoral Officer Debashish Modok said that the counting of votes will be done on March 3.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi appealed to the people of Tripura to turnout in record numbers and cast their vote.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the ruling Left Front have left no stone unturned to woo the voters.

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.

Altogether 307 candidates are in the fray with the CPI (M), the major partner of the ruling Left Front, contesting 56 seats and its constituents - RSP, Forward Bloc and CPI - one seat each.

Meanwhile, the BJP has joined hands with the IPFT, which wants a separate state for tribals, and is fighting 51 seats. It has fielded 57 candidates.

Voting is being held up to 4pm at 3,174 polling stations across Tripura.

The Congress was barely present in the campaign trials in the state this time.

Twenty seats are reserved for the scheduled tribes.

Polling is taking place for 59 seats, out of a total of 60 constituencies.

Accompanied by his wife Panchali Bhattacharjee, Chief Minister and CPI-M politburo member Manik Sarkar cast his vote here and expressed confidence about retaining power. The polling percentage is likely to go up further as more data comes in, Election Commission officials told reporters here. Party President Rahul Gandhi addressed a rally at Kailashahar in Unakoti district. "Yet, this will be the first time in decades when elections in Tripura have been peaceful, despite the CPM cadres trying to capture booths in some remote areas", said Deodhar. "People strongly wish for a BJP government in Tripura".

Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who is the BJP's Tripura election in-charge, claimed that Tripura would be the BJP's 20th state.

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