Odisha Elections: A Tale Of Massive Victories And Close Contests

Odisha’s elections for 2019 were unique in the way that the state successfully conducted simultaneous polls for the Lok Sabha as well as its own Legislative Assembly. The campaigning went on for months preceding the election, with the BJD and the BJP being the main contenders this time around. The Parliamentary Elections were conducted for a total of 21 seats, while the State Assembly elections were held for a 147-member assembly.

The Election Commission of India declared the results on 23rd of May, amidst much anticipation. Hotly contested seats saw a fierce battle and many were declared winners at the last moment. On the other hand, some candidates emerged with convincing wins, thrashing their opponents by a big margin.

Several exit polls predicted less than 100 seats for the BJD in the assembly polls. The final results surprised many, with the BJD clinching 112 seats, only five less than the 2014 numbers. The BJP racked up 23 seats, bettering its record from 10 earlier. The Congress party slumped in the poll performance, dropping to 9 from its earlier tally of 16.

In the Lok Sabha elections, however, the BJP put up an impressive show. It claimed 8 of the 21 seats, while the ruling BJD retained 12, and the Congress won just one.

Huge margins

Khandapada MLA candidate Soumya Ranjan Patnaik won his seat by a record margin of 81,430 votes. Naveen Patnaik contesting from his traditional seat Hinjili too won by a huge margin. He defeated BJP’s Pitambar Acharya by 60,160 votes. Six-time MLA from Athagarh, Ranendra Pratap Swain aka Raja Swain won by over 50,000 votes.

BJD candidate Rajashree Mallick won by a huge margin. She defeated BJP’s Bibhu Prasad Tarai by 2,71,655 votes. BJP’s Jual Oram who contested from Sundargarh also won by a margin of 2,23,065 votes. The oldest woman candidate Pramila Bisoyi, who contested on a BJD ticket from Aska, emerged victorious by a margin of 2,04,707 votes.

Close contests

Congress MLA candidate from Kantabanji Santosh Singh Saluja won by 128 votes, followed by Laxmipur BJD candidate Prabhu Jani who defeated his nearest rival Kailash Chandra Kulasika by 229 votes. Parjanga BJD candidate and former minister Nrusingha Charan Sahu too won the election by a slender margin of 740 votes.

Leave a comment