In the first electoral battle between the newly formed 'INDIA' bloc alliance and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Ghosi in Mau district Uttar Pradesh, Samajwadi Party (SP)'s Sudhakar Singh won by a margin of over 35,000 votes against BJP's Dara Singh Chauhan, as the Election Commission of India announced on Friday, 8 September.
SP established a huge lead polling over 100,000 votes. While BJP's Chauhan trailed behind with over 65,000 votes.
This electoral win may result in laying down a foundation for 'INDIA' constituents to fight the Assembly and Lok Sabha elections together in UP from hereon.
Shortly after the counting rounds had made clear of their victory, SP wrote on platform X (formerly known as Twitter), that people of Ghosi have given their blessings and made SP win the bypolls and congratulated Sudhakar Singh as well.
SP chief Akhilesh Yadav also wrote, "The people of Ghosi have given 'Pachas Hazari Pachhad' to the BJP. This is not only a political defeat of the BJP, it is also a moral defeat."
Chauhan, an OBC leader who had won the seat in 2022, on a Samajwadi Party ticket had resigned to join BJP. As many as 4.30 lakh voters were eligible to exercise their franchise in the Ghosi assembly bypolls and a turnout of over 50% was observed on Tuesday, 5 September.
A total 34 rounds of counting were held on Friday.
Congress did not field any candidate and in fact had stated that the party supports SP's candidate Singh the Ghosi bypolls, while former chief minister Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), too, did not field its candidate.
Meanwhile, Sudhakar Singh was the SP MLA from Ghosi between 2012 to 2017. Earlier, had represented the Nathupur (Madhuban after delimitation) assembly seat, according to PTI. In the 2017 UP Assembly elections, he had lost to BJP's Fagu Chauhan from Ghosi.
'Police Created Fear Among Voters': SP
The Samajwadi Party has also reportedly written to the Election Commission, alleging that Muslims are being prevented from casting their votes in the Ghosi bypolls.
SP chief Akhilesh Yadav had alleged that "police prevented voters from voting, misused police and system" during the bypolls in Ghosi, he had written on platform X (formerly known as Twitter).
He noted, "Their party leaders aur workers made use of new tactics, chief officer was himself BJP's spokesperson. Police also took away our supporters and workers from the polling booths."
Yadav had also alleged that in madrassa 'amjadi', maulanas and hostel students were beaten up and made to flee. Muslim voters who had come to vote were also threatened and made to leave, he claimed.
Out of its approximately 4.38 lakh voters, 90,000 are Muslims. SP party leaders had also earlier spoken on the alleged misuse of power amid the polling.
The BJP tried all possible conspiracies in Ghosi bypolls. The way they misused administration and governance, distributed money and liquor is not hidden from anyone. However, it seems that the people of Ghosi have decided to go in favour of Samajwadi Party.Abbas Haider, SP spokesperson to PTI
Meanwhile, on 5 September, Congress leader Surendra Rajput stated that even though the BJP is "using governance and administration to tarnish the democracy, people are in favour of INDIA (opposition bloc)."
On the Ghosi bypolls UP Tourism minister Jaiveer Singh had earlier said on Friday, "We will accept whatever the result would be, winning and losing are two sides of a coin, and we believe that people are with us," reported PTI.
The 'INDIA' alliance (Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance) involves political parties like Congress, DMK, TMC, JD (U) Shiv Sena (UBT), NCP, CPI (M), SP among others.
'Judega Bharat, Jeetega India,' is their official slogan that they revealed in their Mumbai meet last week. As for their immediate goals, they aim to resolve to contest the Lok Sabha elections together as far as possible, organise public rallies and initiate seat-sharing at the earliest. Who would be their PM candidate, is however still not known.