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Congress doing well in by-polls

Source: PTI
Last updated on: October 16, 2004 12:54 IST
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The Congress romped home in nine assembly constituencies and BJP five in the by-polls held in 16 states on Wednesday.

The Congress bagged three assembly seats in Gujarat, two in Punjab and one each in Rajasthan, Nagaland, Manipur and Andhra Pradesh.

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Its arch-rival BJP emerged triumphant in two seats in Gujarat and one each in Goa, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan out of the 16 assembly by-poll results available till noon.

The remaining two seats were shared by the ruling PDP in Jammu and Kashmir and MIM in Andhra Pradesh. Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed won the prestigious Pahalgam seat defeating his National Conference rival Rafi Mir to enter the state assembly after a gap of 17 years.

Ruling BJP and the opposition Congress shared a seat apiece in Rajasthan. The BJP wrested the Behrod seat from the Congress, which snatched Merta seat from the saffron party.

Defying pre-poll predictions, the BJP wrested two seats from the Congress in Gujarat even as the latter retained three seats thrashing the saffron party convincingly.

Congress, however, failed to stave off defeat in its bastion Khedbrahma where BJP's Ramila Bara pipped its nominee Vaishali Chaudhary by a narrow margin of 549 votes. Vaishali is the step-daughter of former Gujarat chief minister Amarsinh Chaudhary whose death on August 15 necessitated the by-poll.

In Uttar Pradesh, the ruling Samajwadi Party-Rashtriya Lok Dal coalition forged ahead in seven assembly constituencies. The BSP is leading in two and the Congress and the BJP in one each.

In the Madhepura Lok Sabha by-poll in Bihar, RJD candidate Rajesh Ranjan alias Pappu Yadav, now lodged in Beur Jail in connection with the murder of CPI-M MLA Ajit Sarkar, had established an unassailable lead of 83,000 votes over his Janata Dal (United) rival R P Yadav.

In Manipur, Congress candidate S Budhichandra defeated K Randhir Singh of Manipur People's Party in Konthoujam assembly constituency.

J&K CM wins Pahalgam seat
BJP wins Goa by-election
Congress wins 3, BJP 2 in Gujarat
Congress retains Kapurthala seat in Punjab

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