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Dhinakaran jolts AIADMK, wins RK Nagar bypoll

Dhinakaran defeated his nearest rival E Madhusudhanan of the AIADMK by 40,707 votes

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Dhinakaran

In a blow to the ruling in Tamil Nadu, rival faction candidate today won the prestigious bypoll, bettering J Jayalalithaa's margin, while the wrested two seats from the in Arunachal Pradesh and retained one in UP. The (TMC), in power in West Bengal, unseated the in constituency defeating its nearest rival, the CPI(M), by over 64,000 votes. In Uttar Pradesh, the retained the seat in a bypoll in Dehat district, a place which gained notoriety after the 1981 Behmai massacre of 21 upper caste Rajputs allegedly by a gang led by bandit Dhinakaran, the 54-year-old nephew of jailed leader V K Sasikala, defeated his nearest rival of the by 40,707 votes, officials said. Polling for the five seats was held on December 21. The bypoll in the constituency was necessitated following the death of in December last. The late chief minister was elected twice from the north Chennai seat. surpassed the record of Jayalalithaa, who had won by a margin of 39,545 votes in the 2016 Assembly polls. While he polled 89,013 votes, Madhusudhanan secured 48,306. DMK's N Maruthu Ganesh came a distant third with 24,651 and lost his deposit, as also 57 others, including the nominee. He contested as an independent on the pressure cooker symbol after the Commission allotted the 'two leaves' symbol to the factions led by K Palaniswami and his deputy O Panneerselvam. The two factions had merged in August this year after deposing and Sasikala, who is serving a four-year jail term in a Bengaluru prison in a corruption case. In Arunachal Pradesh, where the is in power, the party wrested the seats from the hailed victories in UP and Arunachal Pradesh and said his party is committed to serving the country's villages. He also expressed happiness over the party's improved performance in the by- chief cited his party's win in the assembly bypolls to claim that its good governance agenda has prevailed over the opposition's "anti-development" politics. With the not winning any of the five seats in the bypolls, Shah took a dig at it, saying that he hoped the party will not claim a moral victory. The 60-member now has 49 MLAs from the saffron party, nine from the Peoples' Party of Arunachal (PPA), one from and one Independent. B R Waghe of the won the Pakke-Kessang seat by 475 votes, defeating his lone rival and former deputy chief minister, of the Congress, D J Bhattacharjee said. In the Likabali, BJP's Kardo Nyigyor won by just 305 votes, defeating his nearest rival, of the PPA in a multi-cornered contest. The Likabali seat had fallen vacant after passed away on September 4.

The bypoll in Pakke- Kessang was held after the declared the of Dolo from the constituency polls null and void. In West Bengal's Sabang seat, while TMC candidate secured 1,06,179 votes, her closest rival, of the CPI(M), bagged 41,987 votes. Bhattacharya of the polled 37,476 votes and the Congress' Chiranjib Bhowmick got 18,060 votes, (DM) Jagdish said. The bypoll came in the wake of former MLA Manas Bhunia defecting to the TMC earlier this year. He is a member. The biggest jolt was to the Congress, which not only lost one of its citadels to the TMC, but also finished a distant fourth in the bypoll. Sabang had been a stronghold since 1957. The results came as a booster for the TMC and the Mamata Banerjee-led government, ahead of the panchayat polls and two by-elections in constituency and Uluberia Lok Sabha seat due early next year. According to the chief electoral officer's office, BJP's secured 73,284 votes while his nearest rival, of the Samajwadi Party, bagged 61,423 votes. Prabhakar Pandey of the secured 19,084 votes. The Sikandra bypoll was held following the death of sitting MLA, Mathura Prasad Pal, on July 22. While the SP and the had allied for the state Assembly polls, held earlier this year, they had parted ways in the bypoll. Phoolan Devi, who had surrendered before the police in 1983, had successfully contested the 1996 Lok Sabha on an SP ticket and became an from Mirzapur. The was shot dead by masked gunmen outside her residence on July 25, 2001.

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First Published: Sun, December 24 2017. 21:30 IST
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