Bye-elections: Congress sweeps Himachal, Rajasthan; Trinamool wins in Bengal, NDA in NE
New Delhi, November 2, 2021
The results of the bye-elections to three Lok Sabha seats and 29 Assembly constituencies have been encouraging for the Congress in the states of Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and Karnataka where the party is now better placed than the BJP.
In the three Lok Sabha seats, the results show that the BJP has won in Khandwa (Madhya Pradesh), Shiv Sena in Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Congress in Mandi (Himachal Pradesh).
Congress candidate Pratibha Singh has won the Mandi Lok Sabha seat, the home district of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, by defeating BJP's greenhorn Brigadier Khushal Thakur (retired), a decorated officer who played a crucial role in the 1999 Kargil war. Singh won by a slender margin of 8,766 votes.
In Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Shiv Sena candidate and the widow of late Mohan Delkar, Kalavati Delkar, won by more than 50,000 votes.
The Congress has however, fared well where it was in direct contest with the BJP. In Bihar, the Congress has not been the first choice despite the party contesting alone. The main contest was between the RJD and the JDU.
The Congress won all three Assembly constituencies -- Arki, Fatehpur and Jubbal-Kotkhai -- of Himachal Pradesh.
The Congress has won both the seats -- Vallabhnagar and Dhariyawad -- in Rajasthan. Congress leader Sachin Pilot said, "What is more important, is for people to see who is most viable option that they need to support against BJP, and I think Congress is fast emerging as that option."
Meanwhile, the Trinamool Congress swept all four seats in West Bengal, while the BJP and allies have gained grounds in the northeast.
In West Bengal, in three of the four assembly constituencies that went for bye-elections, the security deposit of BJP candidates has been forfeited. The security deposit of BJP candidates in Gosaba, Khardha and Dinhata have been forfeited, putting a huge question mark on the party's performance.
The JD(U) has won in Bihar's Kusheshwar Asthan and the RJD in Tarapur. The candidates of the ruling National People's Party (NPP) and ally United Democratic Party (UDP) are leading in the Mawryngkneng, Rajabala and Mawphlang Assembly seats in Meghalaya.
In MP's Khandwa Lok Sabah seat, BJP has won with a handsome margin of votes. The party has also won Jobat, and leading in Prithvipur but is behind the Congress in Raigon.
In Maharashtra the lone seat that went for the bypoll has been won by the Congress and it has wrested Hanagal seat from BJP in Karnataka which is the home turf of the Chief Minister but the major setback has been for the TRS which has lost the Hazoorabad seat in Telangana to the BJP.