The results of keenly fought General Elections to the Legislative Assembly of West Bengal indicate that though there were largely multi-cornered contests on cards with total 2,116 candidates in fray for 292 seats that went to polls in eight phases, the electoral battle actually turned into direct contest between the ruling All India Trinamool Congress and the main challenger Bharatiya Janata Party.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee-led AITC raced to the pole position on Sunday within hours of the start of counting of votes and went on to capture 213 seats while retaining the power once again.
The main rival BJP won 77 seats leaving the remaining two seats for others.
Despite her party’s spectacular performance, it remained unclear for most of the day whether Ms Banerjee would make it through in Nandigram Assembly Constituency.
She was leading over confidante-turned-adversary and BJP candidate Suvendu Adhikari in the afternoon with a slim margin of 3,000 votes after trailing for several hours.
Ultimately, the BJP candidate won the seat by a margin of 1,956 votes. But, Nandigram wasn’t the only seat that could have flipped.
A quick analysis of the Election Commission’s data shows that there were nearly 19 seats where the victory margin was less than three thousand votes.
The BJP had a slender victory margin in 12 of them including nine seats where it had a victory margin of less than two thousand votes.
In four seats, it had a victory margin of less than one thousand votes.
On the other hand, the AITC won seven seats with a margin of less than three thousand votes including three where the margin was less than one thousand votes.
In Dinhata Assembly Constituency, Nishith Pramanik of BJP registered victory over his nearest AITC rival Udayan Guha by the lowest margin of 57 votes.
Similarly, Baneshwar Mahato of BJP defeated his nearest rival Shantiram Mahato of AITC in Balarampur by a margin of 423 votes.
For AITC, Bikram Chandra Pradhan defeated his nearest BJP rival Shaktipada Nayak of BJP in Dantan by a margin of 623 votes and Saumen Kumar Mahapatra won the Tamluk seat defeating his nearest BJP rival Hare Krishna Bera by a margin of 793 votes.