Bypolls: CM Dhami wins Champawat; counting underway in Kerala, Odisha
Uttarakhand Chief Minister (CM) Pushkar Singh Dhami has won the Champawat bypoll by approximately 55,000 votes to ensure he continues as the CM of the state. Meanwhile, in Kerala's Thrikkakara, Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) candidate Uma Thomas was leading with 30,000 votes. In Odisha's Brajrajnagar bypoll, the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) candidate took an early lead after the first round of counting.
Why does this story matter?
- After the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) maintained power in the February-March Assembly elections in Uttarakhand, Dhami was sworn in as the state's CM in March.
- However, he lost his individual seat from Khatima to the Congress party during the elections.
- Meanwhile, bypolls were called in Kerala and Odisha following the deaths of sitting Congress legislator PT Thomas and BJD's Kishore Mohanty, respectively.
All about Uttarakhand's Champawat bypoll elections
Dhami has defeated Congress candidate Nirmala Gahtori, Samajwadi Party candidate Manoj Kumar Bhatt, and independent candidate Himanshu Garkoti. After his victory, the CM tweeted in Hindi, "My heart is very emotional with the love and blessings showered...through votes in the Champawat by-election. I am speechless." To recall, in the February-March election, he was defeated by Bhuwan Chandra Kapri of the Congress by 6,579 votes.
Dhami necessary to fulfill dreams of people: Adityanath
Kailash Chandra Gehtori of the BJP, who managed to win the Champawat seat in the February-March state election, earlier resigned so that Dhami could run for re-election. Moreover, Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath was sent by the BJP last week to assist the campaign for Dhami. "To fulfill the dreams of the people...Dhami is necessary," Adityanath had stated during a massive roadshow in Tanakpur.
Status of bypoll elections in Kerala
Meanwhile, in Kerala's Thrikkakara, Congress-UDF candidate Uma Thomas, the wife of late leader Thomas, is reportedly poised to win. "God's blessings are with me. PT's (her husband) soul is with me. I am confident the people of Thrikkakara will accept me in their minds. Even nature also blessed me. There is no rain yet," Uma stated as she voted on Tuesday.
All about Kerala's Thrikkakara bypoll
Meanwhile, JO Joseph, a leader of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), is trailing with around 21,000 votes. On Tuesday, a man was arrested on suspicion of uploading a bogus pornographic video of Joseph. Four other people were arrested last week in the case and are currently on bail. The BJP, which didn't win any seats in the 2021 elections, is in third place.
What about Odisha's Brajrajnagar bypoll?
In the Brajrajnagar bypoll in Odisha, the BJD has nominated the deceased MLA Mohanty's widow, Alaka Mohanty. The BJP has selected ex-lawmaker Radharani Panda, while the Congress has chosen former Assembly speaker Kishore Patel. The Election Commission is still yet to release the first set of figures for this bypoll. As per media reports, Alaka is leading after the first round with 4,733 votes.