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Lok Sabha Results: Lakhimpur Kheri Rejects BJP's Ajay Mishra Teni, SP Set to Win

Samajwadi Party's Utkarsh Verma has established a huge margin of over 33,000 votes against Teni.

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It looks like in the hotly-contested seat of Lakhimpur Kheri, Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP)'s Ajay Mishra Teni is failing to secure the third consecutive term. The results on the Election Commission of India's website shows that Samajwadi Party's Utkarsh Verma has established a huge margin of over 33,000 votes against Teni.

On the third position is Anshay Kalra of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).

Teni, 63, is at present Union Minister of State for Home in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government.

This is a huge development for the district, which inhabits the largest Sikh population in Uttar Pradesh and where there was palpable resentment and anger against the BJP candidate on the ground.

The Lok Sabha election was the first that was held since 3 October 2021 when the gruesome violence in Lakhimpur Kheri took place. A vehicle allegedly belonging to the union minister mowed down four farmers and in the aftermath, two BJP workers and one journalist had also lost their lives.

Teni's son, Ajay Mishra Teni, the main accused is currently out on bail.

You can read all our election-results here.

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What Probably Worked for INDIA Bloc

Samajwadi Party kept in mind the large number of Kurmi voters in the seat and fielded Verma, a Kurmi himself. There are around seven lakh Kurmis and OBCs in the constituency.

In his Kheri rally in May, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav asked the people to “give a reply to SUV through your votes, oust Ajay Mishra Teni."

The Opposition, INDIA bloc, had also tried to draw political mileage against the ruling BJP by refreshing memories of the Lakhimpur violence amid the poll campaigns as well.

The Quint had also travelled to Lakhimpur Kheri, Bahraich and Dhaurehra to meet the families.

Lack of justice in the Lakhimpur case, employment opportunities, issue of stray cattle, inaction against problems faced by farmers and rising prices seemed to be omnipresent in Kheri.

However, locals on the ground had told The Quint stated that "Teni has a huge influence so we don't know what would happen, but if elections are conducted fairly, it's difficult for him to win."

Union Minister Amit Shah who had campaigned for Teni had also indicated a promotion for him in the next cabinet if BJP came to power. Shah had remarked:

“Wherever I go (for campaigning), in every place, people demand that their MP should be made a minister. But you, the people of Kheri, we have already given you a minister. Ensure the victory of Ajay Mishra and I assure you that I will make him a big man.”

Even in his rallies, Shah had raked up the issue of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and also accused the Congress of stalling the Ram temple issue for 70 years.

In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, BJP trusted him by giving him ticket from Kheri and he won with a huge margin of about 3 lakhs votes.

Cut to 2019, Teni's victory was also above two lakhs.

On the other hand, Congress which once considered the Kheri parliamentary seat its stronghold, winning nine times from here, did not field a candidate owing to its alliance with the Samajwadi Party.

There was also regions such as Namdar Purva village where the residents said that they don't allow BJP rallies to enter the area and have rejected their "polarising" politics.

For the families in the Kheri case, Teni's nomination was equivalent to "rubbing salt into their wounds." Apart from that, The Quint had also found out that there was back-and-forth with Teni's affidavit that he filed during nomination.

Daljeet Singh was one of those who were killed in the Lakhmirpur Kheri violence. His elder brother had told The Quint:

"The BJP government is shooting the gun from over Teni's shoulders. We saw what he did when he was in the government before, who knows what he will do next time if he's elected."

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