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SP heads to victory in Gorakhpur, Phulpur Lok Sabha by-election (Sixth Lead)

IANS  |  Lucknow 

In a dramatic turn of events since the 2014 general election, the was on Wednesday set to wrest from the BJP the two seats of and in that had been vacated by and his deputy

As the vote count moved towards the final rounds, candidate from had secured 334,463 votes, with the Bharatiya Janata Party's Upendra Dutt Shukla at the second spot with 308,593 votes.

At the end of the 25th round of counting in Phulpur, candidate had bagged 271,752 votes, establishing an unassailable lead of over 38,498 votes over the BJP's Kaushlendra Singh Patel (233,254 votes).

Mafia don-turned-politician Ateeq Ahmad, contesting as an Independent from inside the jail, won 33,818 votes while (Congress) got 11,934 votes.

The setback comes as a huge shocker to the year-old BJP government in Uttar Pradesh, where Adityanath, who has represented in the seat for five consecutive times, vacated it after becoming the

Similarly, MP Maurya resigned from the after he was named the Deputy in the government.

Both the constituencies voted on Sunday.

"This is a rejection of both (Narendra) Modi and Yogi (Adityanath)," told IANS.

"They have been making tall promises but not delivering on the ground," he said, explaining why the voters appeared to have turned away against the BJP so dramatically in these two seats since the 2014 battle.

leaders admitted that the Bahujan Samaj Party's decision to back the main opposition party so as not to split the opposition vote played a critical role in the outcome.

In 2014, the BJP stunningly won 73 of the 80 seats while one of its allies secured two. The won from five seats. The and the BSP drew a blank.

The took early lead right from the beginning of the vote count that began on Wednesday morning and steadily built up the gap with its BJP rivals as officials counted the tens of thousands of votes.

District Magistrate earlier sparked a storm by barring journalists from entering the counting centre and did not announce details of counting after the first two rounds.

As it became clear that the BJP was headed for a twin rout, overjoyed activists and leaders took to the streets in and to celebrate. were distributed while party workers threw Holi colour on one another.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, March 14 2018. 16:46 IST