All set for counting of votes in Tripura, Meghalaya and Nagaland

In Nagaland, former Chief Minister and NDPP candidate is already declared elected unopposed from Northern Angami-2 constituency.

According to JanKiBaat-NewsX's exit poll, NDPP-BJP alliance will win 27-32 seats, while the Naga People's Front (NPF) will win 20-25 seats.

The assembly polls in Nagaland witnessed a similar turnout as Meghalaya recording almost 75 per cent polling. In the 2013 and 2008 Assembly polls, Tripura registered 92 per cent and 91 per cent voting, respectively.

What all this implies is that the Tripura elections are going to be extremely hard to call. While others are likely to grab 2-6 seats.

The election process in Nagaland had started on a hard note.

Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) Tripura State Secretary Bijan Dhar said the Left parties were "overconfident" of forming the next state government. However, a third exit poll predicts a close contest between the CPM and the BJP in the 60-member assembly.

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Add that to the vote and seat share projections for the BJP - 16.6 per cent, and 4-8 seats, respectively and the Meghalaya Congress has good reason to be anxious. Though parties parley for electoral understanding much before the elections, they fail to arrive at any positive conclusion at the time of actual battle due to seat-sharing intransigence. The newly floated NDPP, forged a pre-poll alliance with the BJP. In Tripura, the most wellknown candidate is chief minister Manik Sarkar.

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While Meghalaya and Tripura have two constituencies each, Nagaland has one parliamentary constituency.

Tripura went to polls on February 18 and elections were held in Nagaland and Meghalaya on February 27.

In picture: Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang (right) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. "It will do well across Meghalaya", NPP chief Conrad Sangma told Express. Meghalya and Nagaland assembly polls were held on February 27.

Though the filing of nominations started on January 31, the first batch of 22 contestants filed their papers only on February 5, the penultimate day for filing of nominations.

DinRaat, a local cable TV channel, predicted poll outcomes in collaboration with Tripurainfo. Voting on 59 seats of 60-seat Tripura Assembly was held on February 18.

In the past, when individual polling agencies have got exit polls for state elections wrong, they have in general done a better job of predicting vote shares.

The BJP previously fought elections alone but has since aligned with the IPFT, which since 2009 has been agitating for a separate state comprising areas under the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council. The state will go to polls in a single phase.

Security has been tightened across Tripura, particularly in-and-around the counting centres.

  • Darren Santiago