The ruling Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) swept the Assembly byelections in 11 constituencies of Uttar Pradesh by winning nine seats on Tuesday. With this the BSP’s tally in the 403-member Assembly went up to 224.
The Congress registered a gain by defeating the BJP in Lucknow West while Independents won in two constituencies, leaving nothing for the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
In the lone Lok Sabha byelection, the Congress wrested the Firozabad seat from the Samajwadi Party (SP).
The seat was won by Raj Babbar, the film actor-turned politician, who contested the election on a Congress ticket from this town known for its glassware industry.
His victory came as a jolt to the SP, which had fielded party Dimple Yadav, wife of party president Akhilesh Yadav and
daughter-in-law of SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav.
Raj Babbar won by an overwhelming margin of more than 85,000 votes.
The SP had emerged as the single largest party from Uttar Pradesh in the Lok Sabha with 23 seats. Its tally now goes down
The UP Assembly results announced on Tuesday must have come as a big setback for the SP, which failed to retain any of the five seats it had held before the byelections.
The party lost even in SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav’s hometown Etawah, where the BSP walked away with the Bharthana and Etawah Sadar seats.
The BJP’s defeat in Lucknow West was nothing less than stunning as the party had been winning the seat continuously for the past 20 years.
The BSP continued its winning spree, which had started in August when the party had won three of the four Assembly by-elections. One seat had gone to the Rashtriya Lok Dal.
The defeat of the Congress in Padrauna and Jhansi, seats vacated by Union Ministers R.P.N. Singh and Pradeep Jain Aditya after their election to the Lok Sabha — indicated the party’s slide in the area. The BSP wrested both Padrauna and Jhansi this time.
The only successful Independent, Ajay Rai, won from Kolasala. He had left the BJP and resigned his Assembly seat to contest the Lok Sabha election from Varanasi as an SP candidate but had lost.