Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and the Left parties on Tuesday suffered setback in the Assembly and Lok Sabha by-polls held in seven States.
While the Left tasted defeat in West Bengal and Kerala, Mr. Yadav's party was crushed by his bete noire and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati's BSP in Uttar Pradesh.
In the lone Lok Sabha by-election in Firozabad in Uttar Pradesh, actor-turned-politician and Congress candidate Raj Babbar was leading by 6,870 votes over Dimple Yadav, daughter-in-law of SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav, at the end of three rounds of counting. The seat fell vacant when Ms. Dimple Yadav’s husband Akhilesh Yadav retained Kannauj and gave up Firozabad.
Of the 31 Assembly seats spread over Uttar Pradesh (11), West Bengal (10), Kerala (3) and two each in Assam, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan besides one in Chhattisgarh that went to polls on Saturday, Congress won one seat each in Rajasthan, Assam and Himachal Pradesh, besides the three in Kerala.
In West Bengal, the TC-Congress combine bagged five of the 10 seats and was ahead of their Left rivals in three other constituencies.
Continuing with its impressive performance in the Lok Sabha polls, the Congress-led UDF retained all three Assembly seats where bypolls were held, defeating the ruling LDF.
In UP, ruling BSP candidates were leading in Powayan, Isauli, Hainsar Bazar, Etawah and Bharthana, poll authorities said. All these seats were held by the SP.
The Congress and BJP won two seats each in Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh, while in Assam, the Congress wrested one seat from AGP.
In Himachal Pradesh, BJP won Rohroo assembly seat and Congress bagged Jawali. While the Rohroo seat was held by Congress, Jawali was represented by BJP.
In Rohroo seat Khushiram Balnatah defeated Congress candidate Manjit Singh Thakur by 8,473 votes while in Jawali former state minister and Congress nominee Sujan Singh Pathania humbled BJP’s Chaudhary Baldev Raj by 5,249 votes.
By-elections on Rohroo in Shimla district and Jawali in Kangra district were necessitated due to resignation of Union Minister Virbhadra Singh and BJP’s Rajan Sushant respectively after they became MPs.
Congress candidate Bimananda Tanti defeated his AGP rival Sivacharan Sahu by 21,029 votes in Dhekiajuli Assembly constituency in Assam, which was occupied by AGP.
The winning spree continued in South Salmara constituency where Wajed Ali Choudhury beat AUDF candidate Abdul Rahman Ajmal by 6,553 votes.
The by-polls were necessitated following the election of AUDF chief Badruddin Ajmal (South Salmara MLA) and Dhekiajuli MLA Joseph Toppo (AGP) to Lok Sabha in May.
Congress wrests Vaishali Nagar from BJP
Chhattisgarh’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party suffered a shocking defeat on Tuesday as the Congress wrested the Vaishali Nagar Assembly seat in a closely contested by-election held on Saturday.
Congress candidate Bhajan Singh Nirankari, who trailed till the 11th round of counting, surged past Jageshwar Sahu of the BJP in the last five rounds and won by nearly 1,600 votes.
The BJP had won the seat in November last year by nearly 22,000 votes.