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Madhya Pradesh bypolls: Congress wins Ater Assembly seat

The Ater Assembly segment was embroiled in an EVM row ahead of the April 9 bypoll

By: PTI | Bhopal | April 13, 2017 9:03:41 pm
madhya pradesh, MP bypoll, madhya pradesh bypoll, EVM, EVM row, electronic voting machine, voting machine problem, indian express With this victory, the Opposition party retained the seat in Bhind district, where bypoll was held last Sunday, though with a significantly reduced margin as compared to 2013. (File Photo)

Congress candidate Hemant Katare today won the Ater Assembly seat in Madhya Pradesh defeating his nearest rival Arvind Singh Bhadoria of BJP by a margin of 857 votes.

With this victory, the Opposition party retained the seat in Bhind district, where bypoll was held last Sunday, though with a significantly reduced margin as compared to 2013.

In the initial rounds of counting, BJP and Congress candidates were in a neck-and-neck race. But later Katare established a convincing lead of over 9,000 votes.

However, in the last two rounds BJP’s Bhadoria closed the gap to a large extent but Katare romped home with a margin of 857 votes in a keenly-fought contest.

In 2013, the Congress nominee’s father, Satyadev Katare, had won the seat with a comprehensive margin of 11,426 votes.

Satyadev’s death necessitated the by-poll in Ater.

After the last round, Bhadoria demanded a re-count but the Returning Officer rejected his plea and declared the result.

The Ater Assembly segment was embroiled in an EVM row ahead of the April 9 bypoll.

The row began with the trial of an EVM at Ater, when some reports suggested that voter-verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) machine dispensed only BJP slips, no matter which button on it was pressed. However, MP’s Chief Electoral Officer denied this.

VVPAT is a machine which dispenses a slip with the symbol of the party for which a person has voted for. The slip drops in a box but the voter cannot take it home.

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