As counting of votes begins for the Meghalaya assembly election on Saturday analysts believe that the ruling Congress might have a hard time to retain its power in the state. With both the exit polls predicting a hung assembly with the NPP emerging as the single largest party, it will be interesting to see whether or not the two parties join hands to form the next government in the state.
In Tripura, two exit polls have suggested the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) dethroning the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M)-led government that has had an uninterrupted run since 1993.
Polling to Charilam (ST) seat in Tripura was postponed till the 12th of next month due to the death of CPIM candidate Ramendra Narayan Debbarma.
While Tripura registered the highest voter turnout in the three states with 92 percent, Nagaland and Meghalaya saw 75 percent and 67 percent respectively.
One of the seats, Northern Angami-II, has already been won by NDPP chief Neiphiu Rio unopposed. Exit polls predicted for a showdown between the two parties, Exit polls predicted for a showdown between the two parties, with the BJP making significant gains in the state, and Congress being reduced in the 60-member assembly. "Our vote share may fall but we are confident of forming the government", party state secretary Bijan Dhar said.
It added that the Left parties would win in 15 out of 20 Scheduled Tribe reserved seats. Nagaland CEO Abhijit Sinha said adequate security measures have been made in all counting halls.
A complex ethnic divide with a plethora of parties has led the state to deep uncertainties with regard to the electoral outcome in all the Assembly elections, including this one.
From that perspective, the best way to interpret the Tripura exit poll results by the three agencies is to identify the "consensus view", which in this case is the fact that the polls are a two-cornered contest between the Left Front and the BJP-IPFT alliance, and that it is likely to be a rather close contest between the two alliances.
According to political experts, Tripura - which had earlier witnessed electoral battle between the CPM and the Congress - will be witnessing a fight for power between the saffron party and the Left in the upcoming elections.
To the advantage of the Congress it has fielded candidates in all the constituencies, followed by the NPP in 52 constituencies, the BJP in 47 and the UDP in 35.
The Trinamool Congress has fielded 24 candidates. The local outfit NPP will get 14, while the BJP is tipped to get 5 seats.
C-Voter predicts that the Congress win 0-2 seats, while the other exit polls predict that the party will not be winning any seats in the state. Currently, Naga People's Front (NPF) is the ruling party in Nagaland.
In picture: Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang (right) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.