“I will go mad,” Cachar Deputy Commissioner, Dr S Lakhsmanan told one of the senior journalists, who like many, were eagerly waiting to get the updates on the results polled so far for panchayat elections, 2018.
This summed up, the pace at which the counting of votes began at Silchar’s Inter State Bus Terminus (ISBT) and Inter State Truck Terminus (ISTT) on the outskirts of Silchar town on Tuesday.
Media persons of various organizations, who too queued to break the results to its avid viewers, readers and listeners, were barred from entering the counting halls in the evening after being issued passes of ‘Entry/Re-Entry into counting halls’.
Argument that ensued, both with Deputy Commissioner and Superintendent of Police of Cachar, Dr S Lakhsmanan and Rakesh Roshan, respectively, with the waiting media persons for entry inside the counting halls, could not break the ice for the better part of the day.
While Deputy Commissioner Lakhsmanan was busy escorting various leaders and district presidents of political parties to the counting halls, media persons assigned the task to cover the news of poll results for their respective houses, were finding it tough to come out with official figures.
Finally, the numbers of winners were officially shared at 6:30 pm, with figures so dismal that can put doubts as to when the whole counting process in Cachar district would come to an end.
A senior journalist, who has covered many elections in the Barak Valley, wishing not to be be named, talking to Northeast Now, said, “The official completion of the whole counting process is by Wednesday evening, but, the way things are panning out, I am quite sure that it won’t end before the next four days.”
Leaders of various political parties, however, made a beeline in the counting venue to get poll results since morning and former Deputy Speaker Dilip Kumar Paul, who was the first to be seen outside the counting hall this morning, talking to this correspondent, said, “In our previous Panchayat polls of 2012/13, we could manage only 4 ZPCs and this year, we are hopeful of getting 16 to 17 out of 27 seats in Cachar district.”
“People have seen how the Congress Government had functioned in the past 15 years and are desperate for a change to see development,” added Paul.
Countering Paul’s statement, Cachar District Congress president Pradip Dey while talking to Northeast Now said, “The whole country has witnessed the results that have swept our heartland yesterday. People have realized that the BJP had made false promises and tall claims rather doing anything concrete for their socio-economic development.”
The war of words can continue, and battle lines drawn for a final showdown at a later stage, but for now, all eyes would be upon the district administration and the panchayat election officials of Cachar to declare the results, sooner the better.
For the record, at 6:30 pm on Tuesday there was no official declaration of the results of 27 Zila Panchayat Constituency (ZPC) members’ seats.
Out of 162 Anchalik Panchayat Members, only eight official results have come so far, with BJP winning 4 seats, Congress 3 and one Independent.
Out of 162 Gaon Panchayat Presidents’ seats, 5 seats have gone to the BJP, 2 to the Congress and 1 to Independent candidate out of the 8 seats.
Meanwhile, out of the 86 Gaon Panchayat Members’ seats, the BJP won 31 seats, Congress 36 seats and Independent candidates won 19 seats.There were 1620 candidates in the fray.