INDIA. MUMBAI: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) suffered a setback in the by-polls to four Assembly and one Lok Sabha seat. Its two former union ministers emerged victorious on the Trinamool Congress tickets.
The results of the elections held peacefully, barring stray incidents of violence in West Bengal’s Asansol on Tuesday, were announced on Saturday.
In West Bengal, former Union Minister and actor Shatrughan Sinha, who had switched on his loyalty to the Trinamool Congress (TMC), trounced BJP MLA-turned-party candidate Agnimitra Paul by a margin of 3,03209 votes in the Asansol Lok Sabha seat. The TMC won the Asansol seat for the first time since the party’s formation in 1998.
In the Ballygunge Assembly constituency, singer and BJP’s former Minister Babul Supriyo, who had recently joined the TMC, defeated his nearest rival CPI(M)’s Saira Shah Halim 20,228 votes. BJP Keya Ghosh came third, followed by Kamruzzaman Choudhary (Congress) in the fourth position.
Congress candidate Jayshree Chandrakant Jadhav won the Kolhapur North Assembly seat in Maharashtra by defeating BJP’s Satyajit Kadam by over 18,000 votes. She secured 96,226 votes against 77,426 seats bagged by Kadam. Jadhav became the first woman MLA in the Kolhapur North assembly constituency.
The Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi contested the election jointly, and the leaders of the Shiv Sena, NCP, and Congress had together campaigned for Jadhav. Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had addressed the last campaign meeting online and had stated that the “saffron” color would be retained in the constituency at any cost. The seat had fallen vacant following the demise of Jayashree’s husband Chandrakant Jadhav a few months back.
The constituency has been a stronghold of the Shiv Sena, and Shiv Sena’s Rajesh Kshirsagar had won the seat twice earlier. But in the 2019 elections, he was defeated by Congress’s Chandrakant Jadhav. Kshirsagar was keen to contest the election this time. However, he gave up the thought of following the direction of the party Chief and CM Uddhav Thackeray.
Reacting to the defeat, State BJP President Chandrakant Patil said that the party congratulates Jadhav and accepts the defeat in all humility. BJP has 15 woman MLAs in the Maharashtra state legislature. But the fact remains that the BJP fought against the united Shiv Sena-NCP –Congress. Despite the defeat, the party will not give up Hindutva, he added.
In Bihar, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) RJD candidate Amar Kumar Paswan won the Bochahan Assembly seat by securing 48.52 percent votes defeating BJP candidate Baby Kumari, who was in the second position. In Chhattisgarh, Yashoda Nilamber Verma (Congress) defeated BJP’s Komal Jangle by votes.