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Trinamool Congress Ups Bengal Count, Wrests Sabang Seat from Congress

The Trinamool had fielded Gita Rani Bhunia, wife of Manas Bhunia, a former Congress MLA who had defected to the Mamata Banerjee-led party earlier this year necessitating the by-election. Bhunia had won the seat in last year's assembly polls.

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Updated:December 24, 2017, 11:30 PM IST
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Trinamool Congress Ups Bengal Count, Wrests Sabang Seat from Congress
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New Delhi: The Trinamool Congress has won the Sabang Assembly seat by-election in West Bengal with 1,06,179 votes, wresting the seat from the Congress.

The Trinamool had fielded Gita Rani Bhunia, wife of Manas Bhunia, a former Congress MLA who had defected to the Mamata Banerjee-led party earlier this year necessitating the by-election. Bhunia had won the seat in last year's assembly polls.

The BJP had nominated Antara Bhattacharya, while the Congress has fielded Chiranjib Bhowmick, a local leader. Rita Mandal of the CPI(M) is contesting as a Left Front candidate.

Gita won by by a massive margin of over 64,000 votes. Her closest rival was Mandal with 41,987 votes. Bhattacharya bagged 37,476 votes to come third while Bhowmick only secured 18,060 votes. Sabang has been a Congress stronghold since 1957.

Manas, who had fought the Assembly polls as an alliance candidate of the Congress and CPI(M)-led Left Front, had won the seat by a margin of over 50,000 votes.

The TMC, which had secured the second position in Sabang in the Assembly election with 36 percent votes, increased its ballot share by 15 percent this time, bagging 51 percent of the total votes polled. The BJP, which had received only 5,610 votes in the Assembly election, also increased its vote share by securing nearly 18 percent of the total votes polled, PTI reported.

The bypoll results brought some relief to the beleaguered Left Front, which has been losing its ground in the state to the BJP.

Voting on December 21 witnessed 74.89 percent polling. The opposition CPI(M) and BJP had accused the ruling Trinamool Congress of driving away their election agents from the polling booths, which was denied by TMC leader and Rajya Sabha MP Manas Bhunia. State BJP president Dilip Ghosh criticized TMC for resorting to terror during the polls.

(With PTI inputs)

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