With 28 seats in the fray, the biggest chunk of Assembly seats that went to polls was in Madhya Pradesh, which saw a voter turnout of 66.37 percent, according to the Election Commission
Held under the shadow of the second phase of Bihar elections, the by-elections to 56 other Assembly seats in 11 states saw a good voter turnout despite the coronavirus pandemic, with reports of violence at two places in Madhya Pradesh and allegations of “fake voting” emanating from Uttar Pradesh.
As per the Indian Express, these elections are politically significant for both the ruling BJP as well as the Opposition parties, as it is seen by many as a litmus test for public approval of the record of the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in its second term.
The counting of these 56 Assembly seats across 11 states, one Lok Sabha constituency in Bihar will be held today, 10 November (Tuesday).
The by-elections of 54 seats were held on 3 November and voting for two seats in Manipur and one Lok Sabha seat in Bihar was held on 7 November.
Madhya Pradesh -28 seats
With 28 seats in the fray, the biggest chunk of Assembly seats that went to polls was in Madhya Pradesh, which saw a voter turnout of 66.37 percent, according to the Election Commission (EC).
Out of the 28 seats that went to polls, 25 fell vacant after Jyotiraditya Scindia’s rebellion against the Congress and subsequent resignation of 22 MLAs led to the collapse of the Kamal Nath government in March.
Uttar Pradesh – 7 seats
In Uttar Pradesh, polling was held for seven seats with 88 candidates in the fray, and saw a voter turnout of 51.57 percent, as per the EC data.
The UP bypolls come at a time when the Yogi Adityanath-led state government has been facing Opposition flak over the law and order situation in the state, particularly after the Hathras and the Balrampur rape-and-murder cases.
Gujarat – 8 seats
In Gujarat, a total of 81 candidates were in the fray for eight seats which collectively had 18.75 lakh registered voters. The state saw nearly 58 percent of the electorate exercising their franchise.
The byelections were necessitated after the sitting Congress MLAs resigned ahead of Rajya Sabha polls in June. Five of them joined the ruling BJP and the party fielded them from the same seats.
Karnataka – 2 seats
Polling for the Rajarajeshwari Nagar and Sira Assembly by-elections was held on 3 November, with a turnout of 82.31 percent and 45.24 percent respectively.
The Sira byelection was necessitated following the death of JD(S) legislator B Sathyanarayana in August, while the RR Nagar seat here fell vacant after the disqualification of the then Congress MLA N Munirathna under the anti-defection law last year.
Odisha – 2 seats
The Tirtol and Balasore Sadar seat went to bypolls this year. The by-election in Balasore was necessitated by the death of the BJP MLA Madan Mohan Dutta in June, while the Tirtol by-election was brought on by the death of the BJD’s Bishnu Charan Das, a veteran Dalit leader, in July.
The bypolls saw a voter turnout of 68.08 percent as per the EC data.
Jharkhand – 2 seats
A total of 28 candidates were in the fray for the race for the two seats in Jharkhand, Dumka, and Bermo, which saw straight fights between the ruling JMM-Congress and opposition BJP.
The state saw a voter turnout of 62.51 percent for the two seats.
Nagaland – 2 seats
The by-elections were held for the Southern Angami-I seat in Kohima district and the Pungro-Kiphire seat in Kiphire district. The by-elections were necessitated by the deaths of then Assembly Speaker Vikho-o Yhoshu and T Torechu of the Naga People’s Front respectively.
Nagaland saw a voter turnout of 83.69 percent in these two seats.
Manipur – 2 seats
Two Assembly constituencies, Lilong and Wangjing Tentha, went to polls along with the third phase in Bihar.
The Election Commission had initially declared five Assembly constituencies in the state as “clear vacant”, but announced the election schedule for only two, leaving out Wangoi, Saitu and Singhat.
Telangana- 1 seat
About 82 percent polling was registered in the by-election to the Dubbak Assembly constituency in Telangana which passed off peacefully, though the campaign witnessed a war of words between the ruling TRS and the BJP.
The bypoll has been necessitated by the death of sitting TRS MLA Solipeta Ramalinga Reddy due to health problems in August this year.
Haryana – 1 seat
The polling in the bypoll to Baroda Assembly seat in Haryana recording an average turnout of 68 percent, which sealed the fate of 14 candidates.
There were 14 candidates, including Olympian wrestler and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) nominee Yogeshwar Dutt, in the fray for the Baroda Assembly seat, which has around 1.81 lakh registered voters.
The seat had fallen vacant in April following the death of Congress MLA Krishan Hooda, who had won it consecutively thrice in 2009, 2014, and 2019 Assembly polls.
Bihar – 1 Lok Sabha seat
Bypoll to the Valmiki Nagar Lok Sabha constituency of Bihar was also held on 7 November along with the third phase of Assembly elections in the state. The bypoll in the Valmiki Nagar seat was necessitated after the death of sitting JD(U) MP Baidyanath Prasad Mahto in February.
The Valmiki Nagar constituency, which is located in the West Champaran district of Bihar and consists of six assembly seats — Valmiki Nagar, Ramnagar, Narkatiaganj, Bagaha, Lauriya, and Sikta — saw 58.66 percent voter turnout on the poll day.
With inputs from PTI
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