The bypoll results have come in as a good gain for the BJP and a loss of face for the Aam Aadmi Party. In Karnataka, the results will boost the image of Siddaramaiah who managed to retain the two seats for the Congress. But the BJP has some major worry in Madhya Pradesh.
The results in the crucial bypolls have come as a good gain for the BJP. The saffron party will end up bagging six out of the 10 seats that went to the polls. Down south, the results will surely boost the image of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah who managed to retain both the seats and thus emerge as the local Captain Amrinder Singh of the Congress. The Aam Aadmi Party has suffered a big loss of face in its stronghold of Delhi.
The results are not a clean sweep that the BJP was expecting, but wresting the prestigious Rajouri Garden constituency in Delhi is not just a major gain, but a prestigious one. The BJP managed to take the seat away from the Aam Aadmi Party with the Congress coming in second.
AAP has conceded defeat, but, as usual, put the blame on the candidate who shifted to Punjab. AAP’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia admitted that the AAP will have to do some introspection, but refused to accept that the defeat is a reflection of the party’s performance or popularity.
BJP candidate Manjinder Singh Sirsa managed to trounce his AAP challenger Harjeet Singh with the Congress rival Meenakshi Chandela coming in second.
The seat fell vacant early this year after AAP’s Jarnail Singh quit as MLA to contest the Punjab Assembly poll against SAD patron Parkash Singh Badal.
Also Read: Time Come to Write-Off AAP in Delhi?
Coming on the eve of the elections to the Delhi Municipal Corporation, the BJP is surely likely to up its ante and the AAP may be booted out unless Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal changes is style of functioning and focus more on delivering his promises rather than bashing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP.
In West Bengal, the ruling Trinamool Congress is set to win with its candidate Chandrima Bhattacharya establishing a major lead. But what is significant is that the BJP has come in second and the Left representative Uttam Pradhan has been pushed to a poor third.
But the BJP has been able to consolidate the anti-TMC votes. Voters who are opposed to the ruling party clearly see the saffron unit as the strongest of Opposition force replacing the CPM that once ruled the state for over six decades.
The result shows the demise of Left and Congress, the two dominant forces and that the BJP still has a long way to go before it can unseat Mamata Banerjee’s party.
In Rajasthan’s Dholpur, the BJP has managed to retain the seat.
Dholpur is the home turf of Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje. The Congress had raised the stakes in the election, claiming that it would reflect the mood on the ground. Wary of the Congress campaign, Raje led her party’s campaign in Dholpur.
The victory comes as a big boost and also a breather for the chief minister, who is facing not just a recalcitrant Congress but also rivals from within the party. Since the BJP’s victory in Uttar Pradesh, there have been rumours of Om Mathur — the Rajasthan leader in charge of BJP affairs in UP — turning into a rival power centre.
The pressure was equally on Congress’s state president Sachin Pilot who was determined to prove command.
In Karnataka, the ruling Congress has won in both Nanjangud and Gundlupet assembly constituencies against its rival BJP in the byelections.
Congress Kalale Keshavamurthy won against his rival V Srinivas Prasad of BJP in Nanjangud and M C Mohana Kumari won Gundlupet bypolls over BJP’s CS Niranjan Kumar.
This is more of a victory for Chief Minister Siddaramaiah rather than the Congress as a party because he had single-handedly managed the poll campaign. The Chief Minister has been facing flak over poor performance and the results would surely strengthen his grip in the party.
“We have to learn from our mistakes in this bypoll so that it does not repeat in 2018. This is the voters’ choice. They elected whom they saw fit,” said BS Yeddyurappa.
The bypolls are considered as prestige battle for the two national parties. The results are seen as pointer to the crucial assembly elections to be held next year.
In BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh, the Congress is leading in the Ater and Bandhavgarh constituencies. The Ater bypoll is crucial because it could decide the future of Congress and BJP leaders who are lobbying for leadership for the forthcoming assembly elections.
In BJP-ruled Assam, the saffron party candidate is ahead in the Dhemaji constituency.
In Jharkhand’s Litipara constituency, the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha candidate is leading, conforming to anti-incumbency in the BJP-ruled state. In Congress-ruled Himachal Pradesh, the BJP’s Anil Dhiman is leading by a slim margin in the Bhoranj constituency.