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By-elections for Lok Sabha, Assembly seats to be held in three constituencies

By-polls for two Lok Sabha constituencies of Bhandara-Gondia and Palghar and an Assembly constituency of Palus-Kadegaonwill be held on May 28

mumbai Updated: Apr 27, 2018 11:17 IST
Surendra Gangan
Surendra Gangan
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Lok Sabha,Assembly
Lok Sabha constituencies have about 2150 booths, while the Assembly constituency has 300 booths.(HT PHOTO/PHOTO FOR REPRESENTATIONAL PURPOSE)

The Election Commission of India (ECI) announced by-polls for two Lok Sabha constituencies of Bhandara-Gondia and Palghar and an Assembly constituency of Palus-Kadegaon on Thursday. The polls will be held on May 28 and the results will be declared on May 31.

The fight for the two Lok Sabha seats is expected to be tough as the Congress party and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) have joined hands against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is unlikely to get the support from its ruling partner Shiv Sena.

The by-polls were necessitated in Bhandara-Gondia after the resignation of BJP MP Nana Patole in December last year and in Palghar due to the death of BJP MP Chintaman Wanga on January 30 this year. Similarly, Congress MLA Patangrao Kadam’s demise on March 9 had left the Palus-Kadegaon seat vacant.

Nana Patole had resigned as an MP on December 8 last year blaming the BJP for its anti-farmer policies. Immediately after quitting, he shared the dais with Congress president Rahul Gandhi during Gujarat Assembly election and within weeks joined the party officially. Patole has announced to not fight the by-polls as he is more keen on contesting the Assembly elections next year. As the seat-sharing pact between the two parties of the constituency is with NCP, it leaves no opportunity for the Congress to field its candidate. In turn, the Congress will field its candidate from Palghar.

BJP is likely to field state energy minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule or one of its district presidents of the two districts in the by-polls from Bhandara-Gondia. NCP MP Praful Patel may not contest the by-polls and the party is likely to filed a candidate of his choice from the constituency. Tribal development minister Vishnu Savra could be BJP’s candidate for the Palghar seat. Congress may field former minister of state Rajendra Gavit.

Shiv Sena, which has fought Lok Sabha elections in alliance with the BJP, and as both constituencies were with the latter, may have to find new faces if it decides to go solo.

In Palus-Kadegaon, Patangrao Kadam’s son and Congress leader Vishwajeet Kadam is likely to be the Congress candidate in the Assembly by-polls.

Meanwhile, the ECI has announced to use Voter-verified paper audit trails (VVPATs) at all booths in the Lok Sabha and Assembly constituencies going to by-polls. Lok Sabha constituencies have about 2150 booths, while the Assembly constituency has 300 booths.

First Published: Apr 27, 2018 11:17 IST