Congress hits market, Army’s “huge leap”: A look at 3 Lok Sabha bypolls

In Mandi, Pratibha Singh of Congress defeated Brigadier Khushal Chand Thakur of BJP by 7,490 votes.

New Delhi:

The Congress wrested the Mandi Lok Sabha seat from the BJP and the Shiv Sena today registered its first major victory in Dadra and Nagar Haveli outside Maharashtra by declaring the results of the October 30 bypolls.

The BJP retained the Khandwa parliamentary seat in Madhya Pradesh by a margin of over 80,000 votes.

In Mandi, Himachal Pradesh, Congress candidate Pratibha Singh defeated BJP’s Brigadier Khushal Chand Thakur (Retd) by a margin of 7,490 votes. The seat was earlier held by BJP’s Ram Swaroop Sharma, who was found dead at his Delhi residence earlier this year.

Former MP and wife of former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, Ms Singh thanked the people for her victory.

The wave of sympathy after Mr Singh’s death this July is being seen as one of the key factors for the Congress’s victory in Mandi.

The Congress also won three assembly seats in Himachal, where by-polls were held last week.

Reacting to the ruling party’s defeat in the bypolls, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said that he accepts the results and the party will learn from these defeats.

In Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Shiv Sena’s Kalaben Delkar defeated BJP’s Gavit Maheshbhai by 51,269 votes. The winning candidate is the wife of Independent MP Mohanjibhai Sanjibhai Delkar, whose seat fell vacant by suicide earlier this year. Before being found dead in a Mumbai hotel, the seven-time MP had accused the Union Territory administration of harassment.

Shiv Sena MP and senior leader Sanjay Raut termed today’s victory as “the party’s first step outside Maharashtra, a big leap towards Delhi”.

In Khandwa, Madhya Pradesh, BJP’s Dnyaneshwar Patil defeated Rajnarayan Singh Purni of Congress by a margin of 82,140 votes. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan thanked the people of the constituency for choosing the BJP, saying they supported Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas”.

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