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Saturday, December 04, 2021

Ellenabad bypoll: Over 10% polling registered till 10 am

Ellenabad bypoll: It’s a triangular contest between INLD’s Abhay Chautala, BJP-JJP’s Gobind Kanda and BJP rebel Pawan Beniwal who is in the fray for Congress. The bypoll was necessitated following Chautala’s resignation in solidarity with the farmers’ protests.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh |
Updated: October 30, 2021 10:59:08 am
Voters standing in queues to cast their votes in Ellenabad. (Express Photo: Manoj Dhaka)

Over 10 per cent polling was registered till 10 am in the Ellenabad Assembly bypoll Saturday. Nearly 1.86 lakh voters in the constituency shall decide the fate of the three key contestants in the fray. The voting will continue till 6 pm, while the results will be declared on November 2.

The bypoll was necessitated following the resignation of legislator Abhay Chautala in January this year in solidarity with the farmers’ protests against the three contentious farm laws. Chautala is contesting the bypoll as the INLD candidate, while the BJP has fielded Sirsa MLA Gopal Kanda’s brother Gobind Kanda. BJP rebel Pawan Beniwal is the Congress candidate.

Speaking to The Indian Express, Sirsa Election Officer Anish Yadav said: “As many as 211 polling booths have been set up for 1.86 lakh voters. As many as 121 polling booths have been declared sensitive or hyper sensitive.”

Hisar range IGP Rakesh Arya said that besides policemen from the Hisar range, as many as 34 companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed to ensure a free and fair election. “As many as 65 patrolling parties have been formed for nearly 80 villages where the election process will take place. The patrolling party aims to reach any spot within 5-7 minutes after getting a complaint. We have installed 52 nakas on the borders of Punjab and Rajasthan. Similar nakas have been installed by the neighbouring states too in their jurisdiction following our request,” the IGP told The Indian Express.

It is going to be a tough contest for the BJP candidate as the party’s alliance with the JJP has been facing opposition from the farming community over the three central legislations. While Chautala claims to have the support of farmers as he resigned in solidarity with their agitation, Kanda is facing opposition from within the BJP as he is considered an outsider. The Congress has also built its entire campaign around the ongoing farmers’ agitation to woo the rural population in the constituency.

For INLD, the bypoll is far more important than the ruling BJP-JJP or the main opposition Congress. The only way for the INLD to maintain its existence in the Vidhan Sabha is if Chautala wins this bypoll.

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