BJP State President V D Sharma with party workers celebrates party’s victory in MP State Assembly
by-election at BJP State headquarters, in Bhopal on Tuesday. (PTI)
THE BJP on Tuesday was set to sweep the Assembly by-elections held last week with leads and wins in 40 of 59 seats across 11 States, including Madhya Pradesh where it cemented its rule by winning 16 seats and was poised to add three more. India’s ruling party wrested all the eight seats from the Congress in Gujarat and retained its six constituencies in Uttar Pradesh that went to the polls in the first pan-India electoral exercise in the pandemic, according to the Election Commission data at 10.30 PM. Votes were also counted for by-elections in Manipur (five seats), Haryana (one), Chhattisgarh (one), Jharkhand (two), Karnataka (two), Nagaland (two), Odisha (two) and Telangana (one).
If the by-elections spelt a big win for the BJP, it seemed dismal for the Congress, particularly in Madhya Pradesh where it earlier had sittings MLAs in 27 seats out of 28. However, it did have a few scattered wins, including in BJP-ruled Haryana where it retained its Baroda seat with its candidate Indu Raj Narwal defeating BJP nominee and Olympian wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt. Overall, the Congress, which had sitting MLAs in over 40 seats, won nine seats and was leading in three. The JD(U) was leading in Valmiki Nagar Lok Sabha by-election in Bihar. MADHYA PRADESH The BJP Government, which needed eight MLAs for a simple majority, has won 16 out the 28 Assembly seats in MP where by-polls were held and was leading in three others.
A buoyed Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said the outcome proves that voters supported the decision taken by the Congress MLAs to pull down the previous Kamal Nath dispensation. The BJP came to power in March after the collapse of the Congres-led Government following a revolt by a section of Congress MLAs led by Jyotiraditya Scindia. The Congress has secured victory on one seat and was leading in eight constituencies. In the 230-member House, the BJP tally has increased to 123, breaching the simple majority mark of 116 and providing stability to the Government. MP Congress President Kamal Nath accepted the defeat and said the party made efforts to reach out to people. “We accept the mandate. We made every effort to reach out to voters. I also thank all voters who participated in the by-elections,” Nath said in a tweet.
The party won six seats in MP and was leading in three. GUJARAT The ruling BJP on Tuesday won all the eight Assembly seats in Gujarat where by-elections were held, dealing a blow to the Opposition Congress which had bagged these constituencies in 2017. The BJP’s tally in the 182-member Assembly has now reached 111. Eight Congress MLAs had resigned before the Rajya Sabha elections in Gujarat, and five of them, who were given tickets by the BJP, won on Tuesday. UTTAR PRADESH The BJP, which already has a comfortable majority in the UP Assembly, retained six seats and the SP hung on to its Malhani constituency in the bypolls for seven Assembly seats, the 6:1 outcome indicating that the ruling party continued its hold over the populous State. MANIPUR According to Election Commission, the BJP had won four seats and one was bagged by an Independent.
The by-elections were necessitated as Congress MLAs quit the party to join the BJP. KARNATAKA The ruling BJP won both the seats for which by-elections were held, wresting Sira from the JD(S) and Rajarajeshwari Nagar from the Congress. It created history by recording its first-ever victory in the Sira Assembly segment Dr C M Rajesh Gowda winning with a margin of over 12,000 votes. In R R Nagar, N Munirathana emerged winner with a margin of over 58,000 votes against his nearest Congress rival Kusuma.
JHARKHAND The JMM-led ruling coalition of Jharkhand retained Dumka and Bermo Assembly seats, albeit with reduced margins from the 2019 State polls. JMM candidate Basant Soren, who is the younger brother of Chief Minister Hemant Soren, defeated his nearest BJP rival Lois Marandi, a former Minister, by 6,842 votes, in Dumka seat. The winning margin of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha reduced almost by half compared to what it was in last year’s Assembly election. ODISHA The State’s ruling Biju Janata Dal won both the Balasore and Tirtol seats for which by-elections were held. HARYANA In a big win for the Congress, its candidate Indu Raj Narwal defeated the BJP’s candidate, Olympian wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt, in the Baroda Assembly seat in BJP-ruled Haryana.
The Congress retained the seat with Narwal winning by over 10,000 votes, said officials. CHHATTISGARH The ruling Congress won the Marwahi Assembly by-poll, necessitated by the death of Janata Congress Chhattisgarh (J) founder Ajit Jogi. Congress candidate Dr K K Dhruw won by 38,197 votes. TELANGANA The BJP wrested the Dubbak Assembly constituency from the ruling TRS in Telangana. BJP candidate M Raghunandan Rao defeated his nearest rival Solipeta Sujatha of the ruling TRS by 1,079 votes. NAGALAND The National Democratic Progressive Party bagged the Southern Angami-I seat in Kohima while an Independent candidate won in the Pungro-Kiphire Assembly segment in Kiphire district.