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UP bypolls: BJP retains six seats but vote share drops

The Congress and BSP failed to win a seat but clocked the second-highest number of votes in a few of them.

Written by Lalmani Verma , Maulshree Seth | Dehradun, Lucknow | November 11, 2020 2:32:08 am
UP Chief Minister Adityanath with his deputy Keshav Prasad Maurya and state BJP chief Swatantra Dev Singh in Lucknow on Tuesday. (Express photo by Vishal Srivastav)

The bypolls to the seven Assembly seats in Uttar Pradesh did not throw up any surprises with the ruling BJP retaining its six seats — Naugawan Sadat, Bulandshahr, Tundla, Bangarmau, Ghatampur, Deoria — and the Samajwadi Party (SP) holding on to Malhani.

The Congress and BSP failed to win a seat but clocked the second-highest number of votes in a few of them.

Even as the BJP won in the six seats, its vote share declined everywhere, barring Naugawan Sadat, as compared to its 2017 tally. Even in Naugawan Sadat, where its candidate Sangeeta Chauhan, the wife of late minister Chetan Chauhan, won with a cliffhanger, the vote share increase was a minuscule 0.09%.

While the overall vote share of the ruling BJP dropped by nearly 4 percentage points – from 41. 57% to 36.7% – in three years, the sharpest decline was reported from Ghatampur in Kanpur Nagar where the party polled 38.36% — a drop of 10.71 percentage points.

In Deoria, where the party’s rebel candidate Ajay Pratap Singh polled 11.35% votes, BJP’s vote share came down by 7.99 percentage points. In this Brahmin-dominated seat, BSP also recorded 3 percentage points drop in its vote share, while the SP polled 5.62% more votes.

In Tundla, the BJP’s vote share decreased by 8.72 percentage points, BSP’s by 3.19, while SP gained by 7.8 percentage points.

Though the Congress failed to win a single seat this time, party leaders see a silver lining in the performance on two seats — Bangarmau and Ghatampur. While the overall vote share of Congress in this bypoll was about 7.5%, its candidates secured about 22% vote share on each of these two seats. This has given the party hope that by choosing right candidates and local equations, it could stand a chance of revival ahead of the 2022 Assembly elections.

Yogi hails Modi, Akhilesh claims conspiracy

Lucknow: Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath credited the BJP’s victory in not just Uttar Pradesh but also across the country to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying that despite speculations, the election results have proven the slogan – “Modi hai to mumkin hai”(If there is Modi, everything is possible) – right.

The Samajwadi Party, however, hit out at the BJP accusing it of indulging in conspiracy to win elections. “The BJP is weakening democracy by indulging in arrogant monopolistic politics. Still, the BJP conspires to win elections,” a statement quoting SP chief Akhilesh Yadav read. —ENS

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