Stay tuned as Aditya Nair brings you the LIVE updates:
SP candidate Nagendra Singh Patel is leading by 2372 votes in UP’s Phulpur, while the BJP is ahead in Gorakhpur and Bihar’s Araria.
JEHANABAD: RJD’s Suday Yadav is ahead in the seat by 347 votes. Yadav is the son of leader Kumar Krishna Mohan. The seat fell vacant after the death of RJD leader Mundrika Yadav. This is the first electoral battle in the state since Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who also heads the JD(U), walked out of the alliance with the RJD and the Congress and joined the BJP-led NDA last year.
BHABUA: BJP’s Rani Rinki Pandey is leading in the seat with 1200+ votes. Re-polling was completed on 27 booths in Bhabua constituency on Tuesday which was necessitated due to malfunctioning of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) during the poll on March 11. The seat saw 54 percent polling.
“I am confident of my victory. The people are saying that SP-BSP grand alliance will win this seat but there is a doubt in everyone’s mind regarding EVM machines. The government can do anything using state administration,” says Praveen Kumar Nishad, SP candidate from Gorakhpur:
I am confident of my victory & that is what people are saying that SP’s grand alliance will win this seat but there is a doubt in everyone’s mind regarding EVM machines. Govt can do anything using state administration: Praveen Kumar Nishad, SP candidate from Gorakhpur. pic.twitter.com/zsXatGusH9
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) March 14, 2018
UP BYPOLLS: BJP’s Upendra Dutt Shukla is leading in the Gorakhpur seat by 3200 votes, while SP’s Nagendra Patel is ahead in Phulpur by 1400 votes.
PHULPUR: BJP candidate for Phulpur, Kaushlendra Singh Patel, is leading in the seat. Vacated by deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya, the Samajwadi Party has fielded Nagendra Singh Patel, an OBC leader in the seat. Patel will contest against fellow OBC leader Patel, who has also been Varanasi mayor and Congress’ Manish Mishra for this seat.
GORAKHPUR: BJP’s Upendra Dutt Shukla is leading in Gorakhpur. In the seat represented by Yogi Adityanath for five consecutive terms — the Samajwadi Party has fielded Praveen Kumar Nishad, the son of Nishad Party chief Sanjay Nishad, as its candidate. Nishad will take on the BJP’s Upendra Shukla and Congress leader Surhita Chatterjee Karim. The BSP has thrown its weight behind the SP candidate.
BIHAR BYPOLLS: The BJP is leading from the Bhabua seat, while RJD is currently ahead in Araria and Jehanabad. The polling percentage in all three constituencies was five to seven percent lower than the last elections as voters did not come out aggressively. 57 percent voting was recorded in Araria followed by 54 percent in Bhabhua and 50 percent in Jehanabad.
Samajwadi Party candidate for Gorakhpur, Praveen Nishad, has raised questions over EVMS. Gorakhpur Lok Sabha constituency witnessed a polling percentage of 47.45 percent while Phulpur saw a turnout of only 37.39 percent at the close of the voting on Sunday, the Election Commission said.
BIHAR BYPOLLS: Numerically these bypolls might be of less significance but this is being termed as a litmus test for Bihar’s Chief Minister Nitish Kumar as the people would be voting for the first time after Nitish Kumar pulled out of RJD-Congress alliance and formed a new government with the support of BJP-led NDA. This is also a test for NDA’s unity and strength as just before the polls Jitan Ram Manjhi, former CM, and leader of Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM), left NDA and joined Mahagathbandhan with RJD and Congress. By polls for Araria Lok Sabha seat was necessitated after the demise of the sitting RJD MP Mohammad Taslimuddin. His son Sarfaraz Alam, JD(U) MLA from Jokihat assembly segment of the Lok Sabha Constituency, defected after the announcement of by polls and fought on RJD ticket. The BJP fielded Pradip Singh who was runner-up in 2014 elections.
BIHAR BY-POLLS: Amid tight security counting of votes for Araria Lok Sabha seat and Jehanabad and Bhabua assembly seats will start from 8 am. Re-polling was completed on 27 booths in Bhabua constituency on Tuesday which was necessitated due to malfunctioning of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) during the poll on March 11. The polling percentage in all three constituencies was five to seven percent lower than the last elections as voters did not come out aggressively. 57 percent voting was recorded in Araria followed by 54 percent in Bhabua and 50 percent in Jehanabad.
Termed by Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath a “rehearsal” for the 2019 Lok Sabha election, the by-elections are witnessing a triangular contest involving the ruling BJP, the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Congress. The saffron party has fielded Kaushalendra Singh Patel from Phulpur and Upendra Dutt Shukla from Gorakhpur against the SP’s Pravin Nishad and Nagendra Pratap Singh Patel, respectively. The Congress has nominated Sureetha Kareem for Gorakhpur and Manish Mishra for Phulpur Lok Sabha seat. Gorakhpur is significant for the BJP as it is the bastion of the chief minister, who represented the seat in the Lok Sabha five times. Prior to Yogi Adityanath, the seat was represented in parliament by his mentor Yogi Avaidyanath thrice. Phulpur, once represented by the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, witnessed a saffron surge in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections and Maurya won by over three lakh votes.
After casting his vote in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath claimed the BJP was getting widespread support from the people. Speaking to News18 after casting his vote on Sunday morning, Yogi Adityanath called the BSP-SP partnership an “unholy alliance”. “The voters will reject this opportunistic, unethical and unholy alliance,” he said.
JEHANABAD: In Bihar, preparation for counting of votes for Jehanabad assembly seat has been completed. The postal ballots, which number to about 150, would be counted. JDU’s candidate from Jehanabad, Abhiram Sharma, reached at counting center last midnight and it resulted in a scuffle between him and RJD’s Suday Yadav.
GORAKHPUR: Counting of votes for the Gorakhpur Sabha by-elections to start at Gorakhpur University at 8 am. A total of 14 tables are provided for counting of votes and will be done through 34 rounds. The bypolls were necessitated when Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath vacated the Gorakhpur Lok Sabha seat and Deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya vacated the Phulpur seat after both of them were elected to the UP Legislative Council.
Ahead of the UP by-elections, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) had announced its decision to extend its support to the Samajwadi Party (SP) candidates in the Phulpur and Gorakhpur bypolls, hours after News18 first reported about the possibility of an alliance between the long-term rivals. The move is aimed at gaining back grounds lost to the BJP after the 2017 Assembly elections. However, BSP chief Mayawati stated that the support will be limited to the bypolls only. “I want to clarify that BSP has not allied with any political party. All rumours about BSP and SP alliance in UP for 2019 Lok Sabha elections are false and baseless,” she had said. Terming their alliance as “opportunistic”, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath had said it was the fear of defeat that the made the unusual coalition possible.
Meanwhile, 57 percent polling was recorded in the by-election to the Araria Lok Sabha constituency in Bihar on Sunday. The by-poll in Araria is being viewed as a test for the ruling JD(U)-BJP combine as well as the opposition RJD-Congress alliance, ahead of the big battle in the general elections due next year. In the Bhabua and Jehanabad Assembly constituencies, where by-polls were also held, the voter turnout was 54.03 percent and 50.06 percent respectively after polling ended at 5 pm on Sunday, Bihar Chief Electoral Officer Ajay V Nayak said. The ruling JD(U)-BJP combine and the opposition RJD-Congress alliance was locked in a battle on the three seats.
The UP bypolls were marked by low voter turnout. Gorakhpur Lok Sabha constituency witnessed a polling percentage of 47.45 percent while Phulpur saw a turnout of only 37.39 percent at the close of the voting on Sunday, the Election Commission said. In Phulpur, rural assembly segments of Phaphamau (43%), Soraon (45%) and Phulpur (46.32%) saw a higher turnout than the urban segments of Allahabad West (31%) and Allahabad North (21.65%).
The counting for votes will begin at 8 am today for the Gorakhpur and Phulpur Lok Sabha by-elections, the polls for which were conducted on Sunday. The bypolls were necessitated when Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath vacated the Gorakhpur Lok Sabha seat and Deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya vacated the Phulpur seat after both of them were elected to the UP Legislative Council. In addition to the two Lok Sabha battles in Uttar Pradesh, three assembly seats of Bihar – Araria, Bhabua and Jehanabad – also saw bypolls on Sunday.