Call it Modi wave or resentment against ruling Congress government, chief minister Virbhadra Singh’s wife and Mandi Congress nominee Pratibha Singh lost by a margin of 39,796 votes.
BJP nominee Ram Swaroop Sharma, contesting his first election secured 3,62,547 votes against Pratibha’s 3,22,751 votes.
Riding on the Modi wave, Ram Swaroop secured lead in 12 Vidhan Sabha segments of the total 17 falling under the Mandi Lok Sabha segment.
Ram Swaroop secured the lead in all assembly segments being represented by cabinet ministers, except Bharmaur.
Ram Swaroop attained the lead right from the beginning till the end. Earlier, Pratibha had represented Mandi seat in the Lok Sabha twice in 2004 and 2013 bypoll. In 2013 bypoll, Pratibha had trounced her rival by more than 1.36 lakh votes.