In a huge setback to Samajwadi Party, the party lost its bastion Rampur to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and is slowly losing grip on Akhilesh Yadav’s home turf Azamgarh in Lok Sabha bypolls, counting of which is being done on Sunday. This was also seen as the first major litmus test for Yogi government 2.0, which it seems to have passed with flying colours.
The Rampur parliamentary seat, which was vacated after the resignation of Azam Khan, was reportedly won by BJP candidate Ghanysham Lodhi by more than 42,000 votes. The official EC announcement is, however, awaited. The SP had fielded Asim Raza on this seat, who was considered a close aide of Azam Khan. In 2019, Azam Khan was elected as an MP from the seat.
In Akhilesh Yadav’s home turf Azamgarh, BJP candidate Dinesh Lal ‘Nirhua’ was leading by more than 10,000 votes. SP had fielded Dharmendra Yadav from this seat. According to the Election Commission, in Azamgarh, BJP candidate Dinesh Lal Yadav has got 25,2872 votes so far, while Dharmendra Yadav has got 24,1274 votes. BSP candidate Shah Alam alias Guddu Jamali has got 18,6288 votes.
Earlier on Sunday morning, SP candidate Dharmendra Yadav accused the administration of changing EVMs. Yadav had a heated argument with the administrative officials and alleged that he was stopped from going inside the counting place. However, later he was allowed to go in the strong form.
Meanwhile, speaking to news agency ANI, UP Deputy CM Brajesh Pathak said, “We’ve won in Rampur. We’re also ahead of others in Azamgarh. I’d like to thank the voters who’re handing us this victory based on PM Modi’s numerous welfare schemes and the performance of the CM. People are sick and tired of the Samajwadi Party. People don’t want any more riots. They want peace. They want development.”
Questions were being raised on the absence of SP chief Akhilesh Yadav from campaigning on either of the seats, whereas UP CM Yogi Adityanath had campaigned on both the seats that went to polls.