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Cong ends BJP's 15-year rule in Chhattisgarh; Raman Singh resigns as CM

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: December 12, 2018  | 04:02 IST

(Eds: Updating with latest inputs) Raipur, Dec 11 (PTI) The Congress is headed for a massive victory in the Chhattisgarh Assembly polls, bagging 53 seats and leading in 15 more in the 90-member House by late Tuesday night. According to the latest Election Commission (EC) data, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which was in power in the state for 15 years, had won only 11 seats and was leading in another four. The Janata Congress Chhattisgarh (J) of former chief minister Ajit Jogi had won three seats and was leading in two. Jogi's ally, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), had won one seat and was leading in one. In an embarrassment to the ruling party, eight ministers of the BJP lost. Home Minister Ramsevak Paikra was defeated by the Congress's Premsai Singh Tekam by 44,105 votes, Sports and Youth Welfare Minister Bhaiyyalal Rajwade suffered defeat at the hands of Congress's Ambika Singhdeo, hailing from the erstwhile royal family of Koriya, at Baikunthpur by 5,339 votes. Urban Administration Minister Amar Agrawal was defeated by the Congress's Shailesh Pandey by 11,221 votes at Bilaspur. Public Works Department Minister Rajesh Munat suffered loss to the Congress's youth leader, Vikas Upadhyay, by 12,212 votes in the Raipur City West seat. Two prominent ministers from the Bastar region, Mahesh Gagda (Bijapur) and Kedar Kashyap (Narayanpur), also tasted defeat. Kashyap was defeated by the Congress's Chandan Kashyap by a margin of 2,647 votes and Gagda lost to the Congress's Vikram Mandavi by 21,584 votes. Cooperative Minister Dayaldas Baghel was defeated by the Congress's Gurudayal Singh Banjare by 33,200 votes, while Higher Education Minister Premprakash Pandey suffered loss against the Congress's Devendra Yadav in the Bhilai Nagar seat. However, BJP minister Ajay Chandrakar managed to retain his Kurud seat, defeating Independent Neelam Chandrakar by 12,317 votes. Similarly, Agriculture Minister Brijmohan Agrawal emerged the winner from Raipur City South, defeating the Congress's Kanhaiya Agrawal by 17,496 votes. Leader of Opposition T S Singhdeo defeated the BJP's Anurag Singhdeo by 39,624 votes. The Congress leader had defeated Anurag in the 2013 and 2008 state polls too. Deputy Leader of Opposition, the Congress's Kawasi Lakhma, emerged victorious from Konta, defeating the BJP's Dhaniram Barse by 6,709 votes. Congress MP from Durg Tamradhwaj Sahu bagged the Durg Rural seat, defeating the BJP's Jageshwar Sahu by 27,112 votes. State Congress president Bhupesh Baghel defeated the BJP's Motilal Sahu in the Patan seat by 27,477 votes. Ajit Jogi won from Marwahi, defeating the BJP's Archana Porte by 46,462 votes. His wife Renu Jogi, who recently quit the Congress and joined his husband's party, won the Kota seat, defeating the BJP's Kashiram Sahu by 3,026 votes. Chief Minister Raman Singh was leading in the Rajnandgaon seat against his nearest rival, Karuna Shukla of the Congress. State Assembly Speaker Gaurishankar Agrawal was trailing. The voting was held in two phases on November 12 and 20. After it became clear that the Congress was heading for a massive victory, Chief Minister Raman Singh submitted his resignation to the governor. Singh told reporters that he accepted the responsibility for the loss, refusing to pass the buck to the BJP's national leadership. "The election was solely contested on a state agenda and it was not related to Delhi. We will sit with the party workers and analyse the defeat in detail. "This will not reflect on the 2019 Lok Sabha election," he said. In the 2013 Assembly polls, the BJP had won 49 seats, the Congress 39, while one seat each was bagged by the BSP and an Independent. PTI TKP RC

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