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Assembly elections 2024: Polling for 50 seats of Arunachal Pradesh under way; 10 BJP candidates declared winners uncontested

A total of 133 candidates are in the fray for the 50 Assembly seats, polling for which will be conducted between 7 am to 5 pm in 2,226 polling stations. A total of 8,92,674 voters are expected to cast their votes.
Last Updated : 19 April 2024, 02:48 IST
Last Updated : 19 April 2024, 02:48 IST

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Guwahati: Polling for 50 constituencies of the 60 member Arunachal Pradesh Assembly began at 7am on Friday amid tight security.

A total of 133 candidates are in the fray for the 50 Assembly seats, polling for which will be conducted between 7 am to 5 pm in 2,226 polling stations. A total of 8,92,674 voters are expected to cast their votes.

Ten BJP candidates were earlier declared winners uncontested making the ruling BJP upbeat about sweeping the elections.

BJP, which is contesting in all the 50 seats, says it is going to be a "friendly fight" against its allies instead of the Opposition Congress, which has put up candidates only in 19 constituencies. Most of the Congress candidates are debutants.

Fight of allies

The National People's Party (NPP), an ally of the NDA has fielded candidates in 20 seats, some of whom are fighting against BJP candidates. The NPP earlier decided not to put up candidates for the two Lok Sabha constituencies in Arunachal Pradesh, polling for which are is scheduled on Friday. Union Minister Kiren Rijiju is contesting against former CM and senior Congress leader Nabam Tuki in Arunachal West Lok Sabha seat while BJP MP Tapir Gao is contesting against Bosiram Siram of Congress.

Chief Minister Pema Khandu, who was among the 10 candidates declared winners uncontested on March 31, exuded confidence that BJP this time could score a record by winning all the seats. Khandu said people would vote for BJP only as they are happy with the development work done by the Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre since 2014 and his government at the state since 2016.

BJP is highlighting the infrastructure development work done by Modi government and the Centre's tough stand while countering China's claim over Arunachal Pradesh as it seeks to retain power in the frontier state.

Khandu, who got elected from Congress in 2014, defected to BJP along with MLAs in 2016 giving the saffron party its first government in the frontier state. Khandu-led BJP government got re-elected in 2019 with 41 seats while several legislators belonging to JD-U and NPP also switched over to BJP later.

The Opposition Congress and People's Party of Arunachal (PPA), however, believe that people would stop BJP's victory due to alleged corruption by Khandu and several MLAs. The PPA is contesting only in 11 seats.

In the 2019 Assembly elections, BJP formed its government with 41 seats while JD-U won seven, NPP in five, Congress in four, PPA in one and two Independent candidates got elected. The JD-U and NPP legislators, however, switched over to BJP later.

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Published 19 April 2024, 02:48 IST

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