BHUBANESWAR: The official announcement of Zilla Parishad election results more or less reflected the unofficial trends during the five-phase polls with the BJD maintaining a lead over its rivals and the BJP posting an impressive performance.
According to the results officially announced so far, the ruling BJD has won 466 out of 835 Zilla Parishad zones.
The results were declared at the block level and it will take a couple of days for the State Election Commission (SEC) to issue the list of winning ZP members. Election was held in 849 ZP zones.
The BJP has won 293 ZP zones while the Congress finished a distant third with 60 seats. Independents and others have won 16 seats. The election results indicate that while the BJP’s performance has improved unexpectedly in the Western Odisha districts except Nuapada, Jharsuguda and Sundagarh, the ruling BJD has been able to maintain its hold in the coastal districts.
However, the BJP has made unexpected inroads in coastal Odisha, considered to be a BJD bastion. The party has won seats in Balasore, Kendrapara, Jagatsinghpur and Cuttack districts leaving the BJD bosses jittery.
The most significant has been the BJP victory in Malkangiri district where the party has won 10 Zilla Parishad zones out of 13 while two seats have gone to Congress and one to the BJD. The saffron party has also swept the polls in Kalahandi and Mayurbhanj districts where it decimated the ruling BJD.
Reports reaching here said the BJD is now in a position to form Zilla Parishads in 16 districts of Angul, Balasore, Bhadrak, Boudh, Cuttack, Dhenkanal, Ganjam, Jagatsinghpur, Jajpur, Kendrapara, Keonjhar, Khurda, Koraput, Nayagarh, Nuapara and Puri districts.The BJP will form councils in Bargarh, Balangir, Deogarh, Kalahandi, Malkangiri, Mayurbhanj, Sambalpur and Sonepur districts while the Congress is all set for Jharsuguda Zilla Parishad. A clear picture has not emerged in Gajapati, Kandhamal, Nabarangpur, Rayagada and Sundargarh districts.
In 2012 panchayat election, BJD had won 651 seats followed by Congress with 128 and BJP 36. While others had won 14 seats including 11 by JMM, Independents bagged 22 seats.