The opposition Congress was headed for a massive victory in Chhattisgarh Assembly polls, bagging 40 seats and leading in 28 constituencies of the 90-member house by late Tuesday night. As per the latest Election Commission data, the BJP, which was in power for 15 years, had won only ten seats and was leading on another five.
The Janata Congress Chhattisgarh (J) of former chief minister Ajit Jogi had won two seats and was leading in three seats. Jogi's ally Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) won one seat and was leading in one. In an embarrassment to the ruling party, six sitting ministers of the BJP lost and two others were trailing. Home Minister Ramsevak Paikra was defeated by Congress' Premsai Singh Tekam by 44,105 votes.
Sports and Youth Welfare Minister Bhaiyyalal Rajwade suffered defeat at the hands of Congress' Ambika Singhdeo, who belongs to the erstwhile royal family of Koriya in the state, at Baikunthpur seat by 5,339 votes. Two prominent ministers from Bastar region, Mahesh Gagda and Kedar Kashyap, also tasted defeat.
Kashyap was defeated by Congress' Chandan Kashyap by a margin of 2,647 votes and Gagda lost to Congress' Vikram Mandavi by 21,584 votes. However, BJP minister Ajay Chandrakar managed to retain his Kurud seat, defeating independent candidate Neelam Chandrakar by 12,317 votes. Cooperative Minister Dayaldas Baghel was defeated by Congress' Gurudayal Singh Banjare by 33,200 votes.
Leader of Opposition T S Singhdeo defeated BJP's Anurag Singhdeo by 39,624 votes. Singhdeo had defeated Anurag in the previous two polls, in 2008 and 2013, too.
Congress' Deputy Leader of Opposition Kawasi Lakhma emerged victorious from Konta seat, defeating BJP's Dhaniram Barse by 6,709 votes. Congress MP from Durg Lok Sabha seat Tamradhwaj Sahu bagged Durg Rural seat, defeating BJP's Jageshwar Sahu by 27,112 votes.
Ajit Jogi won from Marwahi seat, defeating BJP's Archana Porte by 46,462 votes. Chief Minister Raman Singh was leading in Rajnandgaon seat against his nearest rival Karuna Shukla of Congress. Two ministers in BJP government, Rajesh Munat (Raipur City West constituency) and Amar Agrawal (Bilaspur), were trailing. Besides, state Assembly speaker Gaurishankar Agrawal was trailing.
State BJP chief Dharamlal Kaushik and state Congress president Bhupesh Baghel were leading from Bilha and Patan seats, respectively. The voting was held in two phases on November 12 and 20.
After it became clear that the Congress was heading for a massive victory, Chief Minister Raman Singh submitted his resignation to the governor. Raman Singh told reporters he accepted responsibility for the loss, refusing to pass the buck to the BJP's national leadership. "The election was solely contested on state agenda and it is not related to Delhi. We will sit with the party workers and analyse the defeat in detail.
"This will not reflect on the Lok Sabha elections scheduled in 2019," he said. In the 2013 Assembly polls, the BJP had won 49 seats, the Congress 39, while one seat each was bagged by the BSP and an independent.