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Bypolls Begin in 7 Assembly Seats in 6 States, Counting on September 8

Stakes high for Opposition parties in first election after formation of INDIA bloc.
Bihar: Congress Decision to ‘Walk Alone’ Pushes it to 4th Place in Bypolls

Representational Image. Image Courtesy: PTI

Lucknow: Over 21% of the electorate in Uttar Pradesh's Ghosi Assembly constituency cast their votes in the first four hours of polling for the bye-election on Tuesday, the first electoral showdown in Uttar Pradesh after the formation of the opposition INDIA bloc.

Voting is being held at 455 polling stations. It is slated to conclude at 6 pm.

The bypoll was necessitated following the resignation of Dara Singh Chauhan, who had won the seat in the 2022 Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls, from the Samajwadi Party in July. He returned to the BJP and was selected by the party to contest the bypoll.

The Samajwadi Party has fielded Sudhakar Singh for the bypoll.

The Akhilesh Yadav-led party has alleged misuse of official machinery and has written to the Election Commission on the matter. It was alleged that Muslim voters were being prevented from voting in some places.

The SP's national executive member Arvind Kumar Singh has written to the Chief Election Commissioner alleging that Muslim voters in booth number 147 are being not allowed to vote by the polling officer.

Despite their names being on the voter list, they are being told to go back since their votes have already been cast, he alleged.

The letter claimed that when voters resisted, the police and polling officials "at the behest of the ruling BJP are using abusive words to drive them away". It is a criminal act to deprive any voter of his franchise, Singh said in the letter.

Chauhan is being supported by NDA partners Apna Dal (Sonelal), Nirbal Indian Shoshit Hamara Aam Dal (NISHAD) Party and Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party, a former SP ally.

On the other hand, Samajwadi Party candidate Sudhakar Singh has received support from INDIA bloc constituents -- the Congress, CPI(M), CPI, RLD, AAP, CPI(ML)-Liberation and Suheldev Swabhiman Party.

Of the nearly 4.30 lakh voters in Ghosi, it is estimated that around 90,000 are Muslims, 60,000 Dalits, 45,000 Bhumihars, 16,000 Rajputs and 6,000 Brahmins.

A total of 10 candidates are in the fray. The Bahujan Samaj Party has not fielded any candidate in the bypoll. The counting of votes will be held on September 8.

Bengal: Polling Peacefully so far in Dhupguri

Jalpaiguri: More than 34% voting was recorded in the by-election to Dhupguri assembly seat in West Bengal's Jalpaiguri district till 11 am , an official said.

Polling began amid tight security across 260 booths in the constituency, he said.

 “At the moment, polling is absolutely peaceful. Tight security measures are in place and there is an adequate number of forces,” the Election Commission official told PTI.

Long queues of voters were seen outside various polling stations across the constituency.

CPI (M)'s Ishwar Chandra Roy is contesting as the candidate of the Congress-Left alliance, while the ruling TMC has fielded Nirmal Chandra Roy, a teacher by profession.

The BJP has nominated Tapasi Roy, the widow of a CRPF jawan who died fighting terrorists in Kashmir a few years back.

The bypoll to the seat was necessitated due to the death of sitting BJP MLA Bishu Pada Ray earlier this year.

Dhupguri, a scheduled caste-reserved seat, has nearly 50% Rajbanshi people and 15% minority population.

The BJP had snatched the constituency from the TMC in the 2021 Assembly polls.

Tripura: CPI-M, BJP Fight in Dhanpur, Boxanagar

Agartala: An average voter turnout of 18.71% was recorded in the first two hours of polling on Tuesday in the by-elections to Dhanpur and Boxanagar assembly seats in Tripura's Sepahijala district, an EC official said.

Polling began in 59 booths in Dhanpur Assembly constituency and 51 in Boxanagar, and is scheduled to continue till 4 p.m.

BJP's Tafajjal Hussain, who unsuccessfully contested the last Assembly election from Boxanagar, is contesting against CPI(M) nominee Mizan Hussain.

The Boxanagar assembly segment has 66% minority voters of a total of 43,087 electors.

In the last Assembly elections in February, the CPI(M) managed to retain the seat.

The Dhanpur assembly constituency, once considered a stronghold of the Left, will witness a fight between BJP's Bindu Debnath and Kaushik Debnath of CPI(M). There are 50,346 eligible voters.

The BJP won the seat for the first time in the assembly poll held seven months ago.

The Congress and the Tripra Motha did not field their candidates in the two seats for the bypolls.

The by-election to the Boxanagar constituency was necessitated by the death of CPI(M) MLA Samsul Haque.

Union Minister Pratima Bhoumik's resignation as the MLA of Dhanpur necessitated the by-election to that seat.

Jharkhand: Dumri assembly bypoll

Giridih: Over 27% of 2.98 lakh voters exercised their franchise till 9 a.m. on Tuesday in the by-election to Dumri Assembly seat in Jharkhand, an official said.

The polling is underway peacefully across the constituency, and the turnout was 27.56% after the first four hours of voting, he said.

Long queues of voters, especially women, were seen outside the polling booths across the constituency.

JMM candidate Bebi Devi, who is contesting the bye-election as the nominee of the INDIA bloc, exercised her franchise at a booth in Alargo village under Nawadih block in Bokaro district.

AJSU Party candidate Yashoda Devi, who is in the fray as an NDA nominee, cast her vote at a booth in Upgraded Middle School, Chainpur and exuded confidence in winning the seat.

The AIMIM has also fielded Md Abdul Mobin Rizvi.

Voting is underway in 373 polling stations, of which around 200 have been identified as Maoist-affected booths, he said.

Over 2.98 lakh voters, including 1.44 lakh women, are eligible to exercise their franchise in the by-election and will decide the electoral fate of six candidates, including three independents.

Heavy security arrangements have been made with the deployment of Jharkhand Armed Police and Central Reserve Police Force personnel along with home guards, the official said.

The bypoll was necessitated by the death of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha MLA and former education minister Jagarnath Mahto. He had been representing the seat since 2004.

Kerala: Brisk Voting in Puthuppally

Thiruvananthapuram/Kottayam: Voting for the by-election in the Puthuppally Assembly constituency in Kottayam district continued briskly with men, women and youngsters lining up early at booths that opened for polling at 7 am on Tuesday.

Within the first four hours of polling, there was a turnout of 26.6% as evidenced by the long queues outside many of the total 182 polling stations in the constituency.

Till 11 am, 46,928 voters -- 24,682 men and 22,246 women -- had cast their votes, the district administration said. There are over 1.76 lakh registered voters in the constituency.

The ruling CPI (M) and the opposition Congress are locked in a fierce battle for the Assembly seat representing this constituency that fell vacant after the demise of Congress stalwart and former Kerala chief minister Oommen Chandy.

Chandy represented the constituency in Kottayam district for more than five decades without any break until his demise on July 18.

The Congress-led opposition UDF has fielded Oommen Chandy's son, Chandy Oommen, which analysts view as an apparent strategy to capitalise on the sympathy wave following the former CM's death.

The ruling Left front once again decided to go with DYFI leader Jaick C Thomas who had unsuccessfully contested the segment in 2016 and 2021 against the late Chandy.

The BJP has fielded its Kottayam district president, G Lijinlal.

In the present composition of the 2021 Kerala Assembly with a total of 140 seats, the ruling LDF has 99 seats, UDF has 40 seats with one vacant Puthuppally assembly seat.

There are 1,76,417 voters, including 90,281 women, 86,132 men, and four transgenders, in Puthuppally constituency.

Uttarakhand: 5 in Fray for Bageshwar

Dehradun: Over 10% voter turnout was recorded in the first two hours of polling for the Bageshwar Assembly by-election in Uttarakhand which began at 7 am on Tuesday.

Voting is slated to go on till 5 pm. There are approximately 1.2 lakh voters in the constituency.

People began queuing up outside the polling booths from 6 am and by 9 am 10.13 per cent polling was recorded, Bageshwar District Magistrate Anuradha Paul told PTI.

Five candidates are in the fray. The BJP has fielded Parvati Das while the Congress has pitted Basant Kumar against her.

Das is the wife of Chandan Ram Das whose death in April this year necessitated the bypoll. He had won from the seat four times since 2007.

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