AGARTALA, March 15 - Senior BJP leader and Deputy Chief Minister Jishnu Dev Barman today trounced the CPI (M) candidate to emerge as the winner in the by-election to the Charilam (ST) constituency held on March 12.
The by-election was held on March 12 after the �withdrawal� of the CPI (M) candidate, Palash Debbarma, due to alleged terror. Earlier, the election to the Charilam (ST) constituency was not held on February 18 along with the rest of the State as polling had to be countermanded following the death of CPI (M) candidate and sitting MLA Ramendra Narayan Debbarma.
In the by-election held on March 12, out of the total 29,754 votes cast, only one was rejected and 29,753 were found to be valid. The BJP candidate and Deputy Chief Minister Dev Barman was the runaway winner as he secured 26,580 votes, while the CPI (M) came a poor second with only 1,030 votes. The Congress secured 775 votes, followed by the INPT at 685 votes. Jyotilal Debbarma, Independent candidate, got only 198 votes. Interestingly, �NOTA� got 485 votes.
The BJP victory in Charilam raises the party�s tally in the State Assembly to 36, and combined with the IPFT�s eight seats, the two-party coalition has 44 seats � more than a two-third majority in the 60-member State Assembly.