BJP gets slender lead in Uttarakhand seesaw battle (Sixth Lead)

March 6th, 2012 - 7:05 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Dehradun, March 6 (IANS) The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the opposition Congress were locked in a nail-biting seesaw battle as Uttarakhand appeared poised for a hung assembly amid no clear winner in the 70-member house.

According to the vote counting trends Tuesday evening, the BJP had won 24 seats, including Sitarganj and Nanakmatta seats, and was leading in another 8.

The Congress had bagged 18, including Haldwani and Almora constituencies, and was leading in 13 more.

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) which may hold the key to the government formation in the hill state has won one seat and was leading in two more.

Uttarakhand Kranti Dal-Panwar was leading in one. Others have won three seats.

The BJP was staring at a setback with Chief Minister B.C. Khanduri trailing S.S. Negi of the Congress in Kotdwar by over 4,800 votes.

But BJP state president Bishan Singh Chufal won from Didihaat defeating his closest rival Rewati Joshi of the Congress by over 10,600 votes.

Both the Congress and the BJP expressed confidence they would form the new government.

Congress leader and Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Harish Rawat said his party will form the government in the hill state.

“The Congress will form the government in Uttarakhand, that I am confident,” said Rawat.

The BJP also expressed confidence of retaining power in the state.

“We are coming back to power in Uttarakhand,” BJP MP from the state, Anurag Thakur said.

“There are only 70 seats, one or two seats will make a big difference. We will be in position to form the government in Uttarakhand,” Thakur said.

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