The bjp, which suffered a huge setback in Chhattisgarh’s tribal-dominated assembly seats in the 2018 polls, put up a good show this time winning 17 of the 29 seats reserved for the scheduled tribes (ST) category. According to poll experts, the public rallies of prime minister Narendra Modi, Union home minister amit shah and bjp chief jp nadda in the tribal belt, launch of the party’s two parivartan yatras from tribal pockets and pre-poll promises worked in the party’s favor in the adivasi belt.

The bjp on sunday wrested power from the congress in chhattisgarh, winning 54 of the 90 seats in the state assembly, while the grand old party got 35 seats. The Gondwana Gantantra party (GGP) bagged one seat. In the 90 member chhattisgarh assembly, 29 seats are reserved for the st category, which comprises around 32 per cent of the state’s population.

The congress, which won 25 ST-reserved seats in the 2018 assembly polls, managed to secure just 11 this time. On the other hand, the bjp significantly improved its tally from 3 in 2018 to 17 tribal-dominated seats this time. One tribal seat was bagged by the GGP. Tribals are considered to be crucial in the formation of government in the state. Despite taking a number of pro-tribal welfare measures, the congress could not retain their support this time, Raipur-based poll analyst R krishna Das told PTI. Several incidents of clashes were reported between tribals and the tribals who converted to christianity in different areas of the state, particularly in Bastar division, related to religious conversion in the last couple of years, he said.

The congress also made a similar promise of Rs 6,000 per standard sack with an annual bonus of Rs 4,000 to tenu leaf collectors. It also promised to give an additional Rs 10 per kg on procurement of each minor forest produce, he said. The congress even hiked the number of minor forest produces procured at the minimum support price (MSP) from seven to 63, but despite that it could not win the support of tribals, he added.

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