Madhya Pradesh Bypoll: BJP Wins 12 Seats, Gets Majority In House
A supporter waves a Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) flag outside the party’s headquarters in New Delhi, India. (Photographer: T. Narayan/Bloomberg)

Madhya Pradesh Bypoll: BJP Wins 12 Seats, Gets Majority In House

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The BJP has so far won 12 seats on Tuesday out of the 28 assembly constituencies where bypolls were held in Madhya Pradesh, giving it enough numbers to achieve majority in the House and provide stability to its government in the state, where it came to power in March.

On the other hand, the Congress, which lost power eight months ago following a revolt by a sections of its MLAs, has bagged three seats so far.

The BJP is leading in seven seats, while the Congress in ahead in five.

Voting for by-elections on 28 constituencies was held on Nov. 3 and counting of ballots was taken up on Tuesday.

In the 230-member House, the BJP tally has increased to 119 with the addition of these 12 seats, providing stability to the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government.

Before the bypolls, the BJP's tally in the House stood at 107.

The seats that the BJP has won so far are: Bhander, Bamori, Ashok Nagar, Mungaoli, Surkhi, Anuppur, Sanchi, Hatpipalya, Mandhata, Nepanagar, Badnawar and Suwasara, a poll official said.

The Congress has won Morena, Biora and Agar assembly segments, he said.

Prominent BJP minister Dr. Prabhuram Choudhary won the bypolls from Sanchi with a margin of 63,809 votes -- the highest so far.

The lowest victory margin recorded so far is 161 in Bhander where BJP candidate Raksha Saronia defeated Dalit leader Phool Singh Bariaya of the Congress.

Besides Choudhary, other ministers who won are Govind Singh Rajput (from Surkhi seat), Mahendra Singh Sisodia (Bamori), Bisahulal Singh (Anuppur), Rajvardhan Singh Dattigaon (Badnawar), Hardeep Singh Dung (Suwasara) and Brajendra Singh Yadav (Mungaoli).

The BSP candidate lost the bypoll in Morena after leading in initial states.

So far, the BJPs vote share is 49.53% while that of the Congress is 40.30%, the official added.

Reacting to the results so far, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said the outcome proves voters supported the decision taken by Congress MLAs to pull down the previous Kamal Nath dispensation.

"It has been proved today that public has supported the decision taken by our MLA colleagues under the leadership of Scindia (BJPs Rajya Sabha member Jyotiraditya Scindia) to pull down the (Nath) government," Chouhan told party workers in his address as bypoll results poured in.

Alleging rampant corruption under the previous Congress government, Chouhan said the outcome is a defeat of "ego and arrogance".

He said the BJP has secured 11% more votes than the Congress and termed it as an "incredible" achievement.

"We won seats with huge margins and lost with thin margins. We humbly accept the victory," he said.

On the other hand, MP Congress president Kamal Nath accepted the defeat and said the party made efforts to reach out to people.

"We accept the mandate. We made every effort to reach out to voters. I also thank all voters who participated in the by-elections.

"I hope that the BJP government will take care of the interest of farmers, provide employment to the youth, maintain the respect and safety of women," Nath said in a tweet.

In March, 22 Congress MLAs, mostly loyalists of Scindia, had resigned from the party and the Madhya Pradesh Assembly.

This led to the collapse of the Nath government and cleared the way for the BJP to again come to power.

Scindia and his loyalists joined the BJP, with many of them becoming ministers in the Chouhan government.

By-elections were held on 28 constituencies - 25 of which fell vacant due to resignations by sitting Congress MLAs who joined the BJP earlier this year. The remaining three seats were unrepresented due to death of sitting MLAs.

So far, 26 Congress MLAs have resigned and joined the BJP. One of them quit the Congress and the assembly membership after the bypoll schedule was announced.

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