West Bengal’s ruling Trinamool Congress on Sunday won the Sabang Assembly constituency by-poll, by a massive margin of 64,192 votes.
Trinamool candidate Gita Rani Bhunia got 1,06,179 votes while her nearest rival Rita Mondal of the the Left Front backed Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) secured 41,987 votes.
Amid a continuous downslide popularity over the past few years,the by-poll offered an opportunity for the CPI-M, which contested the seat for the first time as the Left Front, during its 34 year rule, had fielded Biplobi Bangla Congress candidates.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) aspirant Antara Bhattacharyya was in the third spot with 37,476 votes. However, the party gained a substantial number of votes in this by-poll as against about 5,000 votes secured by the saffron party in 2016 Assembly elections.
The Congress, which won the seat in last year’s assembly polls, fared poorly, with its nominee Chiranjib Bhowmick in the fourth position securing 18,060 votes.
The by-poll was necessitated due to sitting Congress legislator Manas Bhunia’s resignation, after he crossed over to the Trinamool. He is now a Rajya Sabha member of his new party.
Trinamool candidate Gita Rani is Manas Bhunia’s wife.
The winning margin of Gita Rani in this by-poll surpassed Bhunia’s victory margin of over 49,000 votes as a Left-backed Congress candidate in the 2016 Assembly polls.