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India

Updated on: Saturday, October 30, 2021, 10:33 AM IST

Voting underway for bypolls in 3 Lok Sabha and 30 Assembly seats across 14 states and Union Territories today

The Assembly bypolls are being held after the incumbent MLAs defected to join the BJP
Votes will be counted on Tuesday | Pic for representation

Votes will be counted on Tuesday | Pic for representation

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New Delhi: Three Lok Sabha and 30 Assembly seats across 14 states and the UT of Dadra & Nagar Haveli will hold bypolls today. The Assembly bypolls are being held after the incumbent MLAs defected to join the BJP. Votes will be counted on Tuesday, as per an NDTV report.

Maharashtra will be hold bypolls in Deglur (SC) seat. As many as 12 candidates, including Congress and the BJP, are in the fray for the bypoll to the Deglur-Biloli assembly seat in Nanded district. The bypoll is being held after the incimbent MLA Raosaheb Antapurkar died due to Covid-related complications in April.

The three Lok Sabha bypolls are being held in Himachal Pradesh (Mandi), Madhya Pradesh (Khandwa) and Dadra & Nagar Haveli. All three seats fell vacant after the MPs died. Mandi MP Ramswaroop Sharma and Khandwa MP Nand Kumar Singh Chauhan died in March, while Mohan Delkar, the Dadra MP, died, allegedly by suicide, a month earlier. Mandi and Khandwa were held by the BJP, while Delkar was an independent MP.

Bengal will see four bypolls, including one to Cooch Behar's Dinhata, where the ruling Trinamool's Udayan Guha was beaten (by 57 votes) by the BJP in April-May. He gets a second chance after the BJP's Nisith Pramanik, the junior Home Minister, quit to retain his Lok Sabha seat; Pramanik was one of several BJP MPs drafted in for the state polls.

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Other open Bengal Assembly seats are Santipur in Nadia district, and Khardah and Gosaba in North and South 24 Parganas. For the BJP retaining the Santipur and Dinhata seats, which it won in the April-May election, is a matter of prestige, given that a lot of leaders are leaving the party in the state.

Khardah is important for the Trinamool since it has fielded state minister Sovadeb Chattopadhyay. He had won from Bhabanipur but quit so Mamata Banerjee could win an Assembly seat. Banerjee had earlier lost from Nandigram to aide-turned-rival Suvendu Adhikari, who joined BJP. She had to win a bypoll within six months to remain Chief Minister. She did so by beating the BJP's Priyanka Tibrewal by 58,832 votes.

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Five Assembly bypolls will be held in Assam — Gossaigaon in Kokrajhar district, Tamulpur in Baksa district, Mariani and Thowra (which is located around a tea garden of the same name) in Jorhat district. The fifth is Bhawanipur in Barpeta district.

Gossaigaon and Tamulpur bypolls are being held as the sitting MLAs died. MLAs of the other three resigned to join the BJP; Mariana and Thowra were held by the Congress before Rupjyoti Kurmi and Sushanta Borgohain quit. Now both Kurmi and Borgohain are bidding for re-election on BJP tickets. Bhawanipur was held by the AIUDF's Phanidhar Talukdar before he too resigned and is now also contesting on a BJP ticket.

For the Congress, the Vallabhnagar and Dhariawad bypolls in Rajasthan are being a test of the government stability, given tension between Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot. Vallabhnagar was held by the Congress and Dhariawad by the BJP.

Apart from the Khandwa Lok Sabha seat, Madhya Pradesh will see three Assembly bypolls - Raigaon, Jobat and Prithvipur. Raigaon was held by the BJP and the other two by the Congress. The results will not affect Chief Minister Shivraj Chouhan, but he will want a strong win to claim a position of strength.

Bypolls will also be held in Telangana's Huzurabad and Andhra Pradesh's Badvel. Huzurabad, previously held by the ruling TRS, is a prestige battle for Chief Minister Jagan Reddy, given that the BJP has fielded Eatala Rajender. The ex-TRS leader and minister quit in June over land grab allegations and is now contesting on a BJP ticket.

Other bypolls include Karnataka's Hanagal and Sindgi constituencies. This will be a first electoral test for new BJP Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, who replaced BS Yediyurappa in July. Three seats will be voting in Meghalaya and Himachal Pradesh each, two in Bihar, and one each in Maharashtra and Mizoram. Also voting will be Haryana's Ellenabad, where the Indian National Lok Dal's Abhay Chautala (who quit in protest over the farm laws) looking to win back the seat.

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Published on: Saturday, October 30, 2021, 10:33 AM IST
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