Mayawati jolted as SP gains in UP bypolls

BJP supporters burn crackers to celebrate the victory of the party candidate from Kanpur Assembly seat, Surendra Maithani at Govind Nagar in Kanpur, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019. (PTI Photo)

Samajwadi Party (SP) wrested one seat each from the BSP and BJP while retaining its own seat in the Uttar Pradesh assembly bypolls, the results of which were declared on Thursday.

SP candidate Subhash Rai wrested the Jalalpur assembly seat defeating BSP nominee Chaya Verma in a closely contested election. BJP finished third on the seat. BSP had won the seat in 2017 assembly polls.

BJP, which had won nine of the 11 seats, where bypolls were held, lost the Zaidpur assembly seat to SP candidate Gaurav Rawat by a margin of over four thousand votes. BJP won seven seats while its alliance partner Apna Dal won one seat.

The SP was also able to keep its bastion of Rampur intact despite the BJP onslaught. SP nominee Tanzeen Fatima, the wife of senior SP leader Azam Khan, defeated BJP candidate Bharat Bhushan by over 17 thousand votes.

Congress failed to register its presence in the bypolls though its nominee Noman Masood gave a tough fight to BJP at Gangoh seat and finished runners up. Congress also finished second at Govind Nagar seat in Kanpur town.

Congress nominee alleged that he was thrown out of the counting centre by a UP minister and demanded a recounting.

The results of the bypolls came as a jolt to the BJP, which was expecting to win all the 11 seats. UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath, who had addressed several rallies in the constituencies going to the bypolls, had made repeatedly asserted that the party would make a clean sweep.  

The results have come as a big boost to the SP and prompted its president Akhilesh Yadav to declare that his party would go it alone in the next assembly elections due in 2022.

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