Arunachal Pradesh is inching towards getting its first elected Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government going by trends of the bitterly-fought Assembly results till 11 pm.
According to the ECI poll updates, the BJP has won 28 seats, including 3 uncontested in the 60-member assembly, while the opposition Congress has only been able to grab 3 seats.
Fighting elections for the first time in the state the Janata Dal United (JDU) has bagged 6 seats while PPA, the lone regional party of the state and National People’s Party was only able to garner a seat each till 10 pm.
The state saw 66 per cent turnout in this Assembly polls.
The BJP leadership has already congratulated Pema Khandu on the party’s victory in the frontier state.
Two independent candidates namely Somlung Mossang and Karikho Kri also came out victorious from the Bordumsa-Diyun and Tezu seats respectively.
The ruling BJP had already opened its account in March in the Assembly polls by winning three seats unopposed.
The winners were Kento Jini from Along East constituency in West Siang district, Taba Tedir from Yachuli in Lower Subansiri district and Phurpa Tsering from Dirang assembly constituency in West Kameng district.
Prominent BJP winners included chief minister Pema Khandu, who retained the Mukto Assembly seat in the Tawang district.
Khandu who was elected unopposed from the seat in the 2014 elections defeated Congress’ Thutpen Kunphen by a whopping margin of 2619 votes.
Deputy chief minister Chowna Mein, who had contested from the Chowkham constituency for the first time won the seat by a margin of 7,291 votes after defeating Khunang Kri of the Congress.
Mein had since 1995 contested from the Lekang seat in Namsai district and won in the past five consecutive terms; however, he changed his bastion this election due the permanent residence certificate (PRC) issue which rocked the state in February.
PHE minister Wanki Lowang retained the Namsang seat after defeating his nearest rival Ngonglin Boi of the NPP by a margin of 1682 votes while education minister Honchun Ngandam defeated his nearest rival of the Congress by a margin of 3788 votes for the Pongchau-Wakka seat.
Sitting BJP MLA from Nari Koyu constituency Kento Rina retained the seat by defeating his nearest rival Tojir Kadu of the Congress by a margin of 216 votes while BJP MLA from Liromoba constituency Nyamar Karbak won from the seat for the third time defeating his nearest rival Jarpum Gamlin of the NPP by 664 votes.
Sitting MLA from Lumla constituency in Tawang district, Jambey Tashi has been re-elected from the seat after he defeated his lone rival of the Congress by a margin of 1288 votes. BJP’s MLA from Khonsa East, Wanglam Sawin also retained the seat by defeating Danhang Phuksa of the NPP by a margin of 1594 votes.
Tana Hali Tara of the BJP won from Doimukh constituency defeating his nearest rival Nabam Vivek of NPP by 2,385 votes.
Two female candidates fielded by the BJP also registered win in their respective constituencies.
Representing Dambuk constituency in Lower Dibang Valley district for the BJP, sitting MLA Gum Tayeng retained the seat by defeating her rival Tony Pertin of the NPP by 873 votes while former chief minister Kalikho Pul’s wife Dasanglu Pul also retained the Hayuliang seat by defeating Congress’s Lupalium Kri by a margin of 1332 votes.
The BJP also opened its account in Nacho in the Upper Subansiri district as Nakap Nalo defeated veteran Congress leader Tanga Byaling by a margin of 698 votes while the saffron party’s candidate from Anini, Mopi Mihu registered a win against Singe Mille of the Congress.
Mihu defeated his opponent by a margin of 1134 votes.
Bamang Felix and P D Sona, both government spokespersons of the BJP state government, also registered win in their respective constituencies.
Where Sona defeated his nearest rival Tori Ragor of the NPP by a close margin of 68 votes, Felix got the better of Congress candidate Tai Nikio by 181 votes.
The Pangin constituency also saw BJP come out victorious as it candidate Ojing Tasing, defeated sitting MLA Tapang Taloh of the Congress by a gigantic margin of 4052 votes.
BJP loses prominent seats: The BJP, however, had to face loss in the Itanagar constituency as JDU candidate Techi Kaso retained the seat after defeating his nearest rival Kipa Babu of the BJP by a margin of 302 votes.
The BJP also received a major setback in the form of speaker Tenzing Norbu Thongdok, who faced defeat in the hands of Dorjee Wangdi Kharma of the JDU.
Kharma, a new comer won the seat by a margin of 1726 votes.
In other setbacks for the saffron party, the Rumgong constituency saw veteran BJP leader and sitting power minister Tamiyo Taga lose his seat to Talem Taboh of the JDU. Taboh won the seat by a margin of 265 votes. Also BJP candidate Tapak Lendo lost the Likabali seat to PPA candidate Kardo Nyigyor who retained the seat with a margin of 178 votes.
Besides this, sports and youth affairs minister Mohesh Chai also lost to independent candidate Karikho Kri by a margin of 155 votes.
The BJP also lost the Mariyang Geku seat to Kannong Taku of the JDU by 1260 votes.
In another huge setback, though not for the BJP but its alliance partner NPP, former home minister Kumar Waii who represented the Bameng seat in East Kameng district for the last two terms lost to new comer Goruk Pordung of the Saffron party. Pordung won the seat by a margin of 393 votes.
Waii had in March joined the NPP along with 12 other sitting legislators and one minister.
Laching Kacha Yangfo of the BJP also lost to Hayeng Mangfi of the JDU by 351 votes.
Congress wins: The Congress, which won majority of seats in 2014, has won three seats till filing of this report.
Former chief minister Nabam Tuki retained his Sagalee seat by defeating Tarh Hari by 1321 votes, while Ninong Ering won the Pasighat (West) seat by 571 votes. The other Congress MLA to register a win was Wangling Lowangdang who won the Borduria Bogapani seat.
Lowangdang defeated Jowang Hosai of the BJP by 97 votes.