Raipur, Oct 24 : Chhattisgarh’s ruling Congress on Thursday won Scheduled Tribe reserved Chitrakot assembly seat in restive Bastar region and thus blanked out the BJP from tribal stronghold sprawling Bastar region which has a total of 12 assembly seats.
Congress candidate Rajman Benzam registered an impressive victory over former legislator Lachhuram Kashyap of the BJP by over 17,800 votes.
The BJP’s tally in the state’s 90-member state assembly has come down to 14 while the Congress number has surged to record 69 seats.
“I acknowledge the love and affection of people of Chitrakot”, Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel remarked in his first reaction after the result was officially announced.
Visibly looking jubilant Baghel mocked the BJP and said, “finally I have the BJP-mukt (free) Bastar”. He reiterated that his government would continue to work for the larger welfare of the people of the state.
The polling in Chitrakot was necessitated as sitting legislator of the Congress Deepak Baij resigned after being elected to the Lok Sabha from Bastar seat.
Chhattisgarh’s former chief minister Raman Singh who was the star campaigner for the BJP in the by-poll, said in a statement, “Congress misused government machinery to win Chitrakot seat at any cost”.