Counting of votes for seven Assembly seats underway

The results for bypolls to seven assembly seats in six states will be declared today in what is being seen as a major test for the opposition alliance INDIA against the BJP-led NDA ahead of the polls in five states later this year and Lok Sabha elections in 2024.

The counting of votes began at 8 am at centres set up in the respective states.

The seven seats — Bageshwar in Uttarakhand, Ghosi in Uttar Pradesh, Puthuppally in Kerala, Dhupguri in West Bengal, Dumri in Jharkhand, and Boxanagar and Dhanpur in Tripura — went to polls on September 5.

The by-election saw the INDIA alliance putting up a united front in the Ghosi constituency in Uttar Pradesh where the polling percentage was 50.77 and in Jharkhand’s Dumri where a total of 64.84 per cent of 2.98 lakh voters exercised their franchise.

Out of the seven seats, three (Dhanpur, Bageshwar and Dhupguri) were held by the BJP and one each by the Samajwadi Party (Ghosi), CPI(M) (Boxanagar), JMM (Dumri) and the Congress (Puthuppally).

In Uttar Pradesh, the Ghosi seat fell vacant after the resignation of SP MLA and OBC leader Dara Singh Chauhan, who rejoined the BJP.

For the Bageshwar assembly bypoll in Uttarakhand, the counting will be done at 14 tables with 130 polling personnel on the job, District Magistrate Anuradha Pal said on Thursday.