Delhi BJP looks to review heavy bypoll defeat

Bawana bypoll

The victory means that AAP has 66 MLAs in the state assembly of 70 members, still a crushing majority; it had won 67 in the assembly elections leaving only three for the BJP.

The AAP won by nearly 24, 000 votes this year after the final round of counting while the BJP earned 35,834 and Congress earned 31,919 votes.

"The by-elections are a moral defeat for BJP, as their candidates indulged in corrupt practices as official position was used by the two candidates to offer jobs to the voters", said Goa Pradesh Congress Committee president Shantaram Naik while addressing a press conference in Panaji.

Ved Prakash had won from Bawana in the 2015 Assembly elections in the city on an AAP ticket.

Bawana, a reserved constituency in North West Delhi includes a large number of rural areas.


Four-time Chief Minister of Goa and five-time Panaji MLA Manohar Parrikar won from Panaji, while his health minister Vishwajit Rane, who joined the BJP after quitting the Congress, retained the Valpoi constituency in the Assembly by-polls. AAP candidate Ram Chander bagged 59,886 votes in the bypoll, while the BJP that had fielded AAP turncoat Ved Prakash, finished a distant second with 35,834 votes. In Andhra Pradesh, Telugu Desam Party candidate Bhuma Brahmananda Reddy secured a victory in the Nandyal by-polls with 27,456 votes. The BJP had hoped to add a fifth seat to its kitty after snatching the Rajouri constituency from AAP in another by-election earlier this year but it had to bite dust. Other prospective candidates too wilted under pressure, drawing censure from Goa RSS leader Subhash Velingkar, who accused the chief minister of using coercive tactics. For the BJP, the road ahead gets much more difficult from here, and the party needs to work hard and expand its support base in Delhi.

The by-poll in Bawana was held on August 23 which saw a meagre turnout of 45 per cent. Nagi Reddy, who crossed over to the TDP a year ago, died in April, leaving the vacancy.

He had resigned from Assembly membership and joined the BJP in March this year, necessitating the bypoll.

Hindustan Times today reported a BJP insider as saying that there was an internal bickering in the party, which resulted in the loss. In the previous five elections, the Congress had struggled to go over even 5,000 votes.

"I was expecting to win", Parrikar told reporters after the victory. As many as 1,413 votes were polled under the "none of the above" (NOTA) category.

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