In a huge blow to the ruling BJP, the Samajwadi Party on Wednesday took winning leads in both the Lok Sabha seats of Gorakhpur and Phulpur which were vacated by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and his deputy Keshav Prasad Maurya. With the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) backing its bitter rival Samajwadi Party, the Bharatiya Janata Party appeared to be heading for a shock defeat in both the constituencies in what is seen as a major embarrassment to Adityanath in particular. Election Commission officials said the Samajwadi Party’s Nagendra Singh Patel had taken an unassailable lead of 22,848 votes over BJP’s Kashlendra Singh Patel in Phulpur, which along with Gorakhpur voted on Sunday. Pravin Nishad of the Samajwadi Party was leading by 19,201 votes in Gorakhpur, which Aditynath had won five consecutive times, over the BJP candidate Upendra Dutt Shukla. With just 37 per cent of the votes polled in Phulpur and 42 per cent in Gorakhpur, officials admitted that the BJP was unlikely to reverse the expected result. While the Samajwadi Party activists started celebrating what now looks like a sure and morale-boosting victory, the BJP was stunned into silence. Top 10 developments 1. BJP in for rude shock in Gorakhpur: In Gorakhpur, which Adityanath represented for five straight terms since 1998, BJP candidate Upendra Dutt Shukla was trailing to the Samajwadi Party, an Election Commission official said. SP’s Praveen Kumar Nishad leads by 22,954 votes with 3,77,146 votes, BJP’s Upendra Dutt Shukla second with 3,54,192 votes after 25th round of counting. 2. Phulpur brings no good tidings for the BJP Samajwadi Party’s Nagendra Pratap Singh Patel leading by 47,351 with 3,05,172 votes, BJP’s Kaushlendra Singh Patel second with 2,57,821 votes after 28th round of counting. 3. Congratulations pour in for SP, BSP, RJD “Congratulations to Lalu Prasad Ji for winning Araria and Jehanabad This is a great victory,” said Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee to RJD chief Lalu Prasad (who’s in jail). “This is the beginning of the end,” added the Trinamool chief and West Bengal chief minister on Twitter. Omar Abdullah “Dear friends in the BJP, thank you for your hard work and continuing efforts to prove me wrong. I’m truly grateful. Sincerely, your friendly opposition guy… At this rate we might as well forget 2019 and start planning/hoping for 2024,” tweeted Abdullah. The BJP deputy chief minister in Uttar Pradesh, Keshav Prasad Maurya, who vacated his Phulpur seat necessitating a bypoll there, said his party needs to analyse the results to prevent a broader Opposition front from springing up ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. “We didn’t expect that BSP’s vote will be transferred to SP in such a manner. We will analyse after seeing the final results and prepare for a situation in future when BSP, SP and Congress can come together and also make our strategy for winning 2019 elections,” said Maurya to ANI. 4. This is rejection of Modi, Yogi: SP “This is a rejection of both (Prime Minister Narendra) Modi and Yogi (Adityanath),” Samajwadi Party spokesman Anurag Bhaudauria told IANS. “They have been making tall promises but not delivering on the ground,” he said, explaining why the voters appeared to have turned away against the BJP so dramatically in these two seats since the 2014 Lok Sabha battle. 5. Gorakhpur DM bans media entry at counting centre Gorakhpur District Magistrate Rajeev Rautela, who earlier sparked a storm by barring journalists from entering the counting centre and did not announce details of counting after the first two rounds, said Pravin Nishad of the Samajwadi Party was leading by 10,598 votes after eight rounds of vote count. 6. UP Assembly adjourned over ban on media’s entry to Gorakhpur counting centre Amid the counting of votes for the bypolls, the Uttar Pradesh Assembly was adjourned for 10 minutes on Wednesday, following ruckus over the issue of media being kept out of counting centre in Gorakhpur.
Source: Business Standard