ITANAGAR, May 23 - The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Arunachal Pradesh is heading towards crossing the absolute majority mark by winning 22 out of the 60 Assembly seats so far. It was leading in nine other constituencies till reports last came in. The saffron party has earlier won three seats uncontested.
On the other hand, the Opposition Congress could not even touch the double-digit mark. It has won three seats so far. In contrast, the new entrant, Janata Dal (United), has won six seats and is leading in another seat.
Prominent among the winners are Chief Minister Pema Khandu from the Mukto Assembly Constituency, Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein from Chowkham, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Alo Libang (Tuting-Yingkiong), former Congress Chief Minister Nabam Tuki (Sagalee) and sitting Arunachal East MP Ninong Ering from the Pasighat West constituency.
The top leaders who faced shocking defeats in the polls included BJP nominee and Arunachal Assembly Speaker Tenzing Norbu Thongdok from Kalaktang constituency, senior minister Tamiyo Taga from Rumgong, Home Minister Kumar Waii from Bameng, former Chief Minister Gegong Apang from Tuting-Yingkiong and senior Congress leader Tanga Byaling.
BJP�s Chowna Mein won the Chowkham seat by defeating his nearest Congress rival, Khunang Kri, by 7,291 votes. BJP candidate Alo Libang has retained the Tuting-Yingkiong seat by defeating Janata Dal (Secular) candidate and former Chief Minister Gegong Apang, for the third time in a row, by a margin of 1,609 votes.
BJP nominee Goruk Pordung won the Bameng Assembly constituency by defeating National People�s Party (NPP) candidate and former Home Minister Kumar Waii by 393 votes.
Senior Congress leader Nabam Tuki retained his citadel, Sagalee, by 1,321 votes. Ninong Ering won Pasighat West by 571 votes and Wanglin Lowangdong bagged the Borduria-Bogapani seat by a 97-vote margin win.
The Janata Dal (United) has registered victory in five Assembly seats. JD(U)�s Techi Kaso won the prestigious Itanagar seat by defeating BJP nominee, Kipa Babu, by a margin of 302 votes. JD (U) candidate Dorjee Wangdi Kharma won has from Kalaktang, Kanggong Taku from Mariyang-Geku and Talem Taboh from Rumgong.
Meanwhile, NPP candidate late Tirong Aboh, who was killed in an ambush on Tuesday last, was ahead of BJP�s Phawang Lowang by 2,056 votes. Mutchu Mithi of the NPP is leading in Roing by 257 votes.
As per the updated reports, the BJP won 22 seats, followed by the JD(U) six, Congress three, PPA one, NPP one and Independents two.
Meanwhile, both the BJP candidates are set to grab the two Lok Sabha seats as they have taken considerable leads against their nearest rivals. Sitting BJP MP and Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju is leading by over one lakh votes in Arunachal West Parliamentary seat, ahead of Congress candidate Nabam Tuki. Arunachal Pradesh BJP president Tapir Gao is leading in the Arunachal East seat by over 50,000 votes ahead of Lowangcha Wanglat of the Congress.