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Assembly bypolls: BJP wins 16 seats, Congress 11

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New Delhi, 24 Oct : Five months after its landslide victory in the Lok Sabha elections, the BJP on Thursday won 17 Assembly seats in the bypolls held in 51 Assembly constituencies across 17 states. The Congress, which was decimated in the general elections in May, bagged 11 seats in the by-elections held on October 21.

In Uttar Pradesh, where by-elections were held for 11 Assembly seats, the BJP won 7, its ally Apna Dal got 1, and the Samajwadi Party won 3 seats.

The ruling BJP won the Gangoh, Iglas, Lucknow Cantt, Govind Nagar, Manikpur, Balha and Ghosi. The candidate of its ally Apna Dal won from Pratapgarh.

Samajwadi Party’s Tazeen Fatma, a Rajya Sabha member and wife of senior party leader and Lok Sabha member Azam Khan, won from the Rampur seat, defeating BJP’s Bharat Bhushan. Samajwadi Party’s Gaurav Kumar secured victory in Zaidpur seat, defeating BJP’s Ambrish, and the party’s Subhash Rai pipped the BSP’s Chhaya Verma to the post in Jalalpur.

In Bihar, the Rashtriya Janata Dal won the Simri-Bakhtiarpur and Belhar seats, the AIMIM’s Qamrul Hoda won in Kishanganj and the ruling Janata Dal-United in the Nathnagar constituency. Independent Karnjeet Singh alias Vyas Singh won in Daraundha.

In Gujarat, the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah, 6 seats were at stake, out of which the BJP bagged Kheralu, Lunawada and Amraiwadi while the Congress won the remaining 3 – Tharad, Bayad and Radhanpur, where its candidate Raghubhai Merajbhai Desai defeated Alpesh Thakor, who left the Congress to join the BJP.

In Assam, the BJP won the Ratabari, Rangapara and Sonari seats in Assam while the All India United Demoratic Front won the Jania seat.

The BJP won Martamrumtek (BL) and Gangtok (BL) in Sikkim while the Sikkim Krantikari Morcha secured the Poklok Kamrang seat.

The BJP secured victory from Himachal Pradesh’s Dharamshala and Pachhad seats where it had fielded Vishal Nehria and Reena Kashyap, respectively, defeating an Independent and Congress candidate.

Independent candidate Chakat Aboh won from Khonsa West constituency in Arunachal Pradesh’s defeating Independent candidate Azet Homtok by a margin of 1,887 votes.

The Congress secured victory in three of the four seats in Punjab – Balwinder Singh Dhaliwal won in Phagwara defeating the BJP’s Rajesh Bagha, Indu Bala trumped the BJP’s Jangi Lal Mahajan in Mukerian and Ramdinder Singh Awla defeated the Shiromani Akali Dal’s Raj Singh in Jalalabad. However, the party faced defeat in the Dakha seat, where its Sandeep Singh Sandhu lost to Akali Dal’s Manpreet Singh Ayali.

In Rajasthan, Congress’s Rita Choudhary defeated BJP’s Sushila Singra from Mandawa seat but the party faced defeat from the Rashtriya Loktantrik Party in Khinwsar seat where Narayan Beniwal defeated its Harendra Midha.

The Congress registered victory in Chhattisgarh’s Chitrakot seat where Rajman Venjam defeated the BJP’s Lachhuram Kashyap. It also won Madhya Pradesh’s Jhabua constituency where it fielded Kantilal Bhuria against BJP’s Bhanu Bhuria.

The Congress also won two of the five seats in Kerala – Vinod defeating Independent Manu Roy in Ernakulam and Shanimol Osman defeated Manu C. Pulickal of the CPI-M in Aroor – while its ally, the Indian Union Muslim League’s M.C. Kamaruddin won the Manjeshwar seat, defeating the BJP’s Raveesh Thanthri Kuntar.

The ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist secured victory in Konni and Vattiyoorkavu seats, where its candidates K.U. Jenish Kumar and V.K.Prasanth defeated the Congress’ P. Mohanraj and K. Mohankumar, respectively.

The United Democratic Party’s Balajied Kupar Synrem won Meghalaya’s Shella seat, defeating Independent Grace Mary Kharpuri while the Biju Janata Dal retained Odisha’s Bijepur constituency with Rita Sahu defeating the BJP’s Sanat Kumar Gartia.

Congress’s A. Johnkumar defeated All India N.R. Congress’s Bouvaneswarane with a margin of 7,170 votes in Puducherry’s Kamaraj Nagar.

AIADMK’s Muthamilselvan R. and Narayanan V. defeated DMK’s Pugazhenthi N. in Vikravandi and Congress’s Manoharan R. in Nanguneri seat, respectively, in Tamil Nadu.

The Telangana Rashtra Samithi’s Saidi Reddy Shanampudi defeated Congress’s Nalamada Padmavathi Reddy with a margin of 42,485 votes in Telangana’s Huzurnagar.

India

Farmer leaders at talks refuse govt’s lunch offer

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New Delhi, 3 Dec : Farmers’ representatives, participating in the fourth round of talks with the government over their charter of demands, refused to partake of the lunch provided by the Centre, preferring to eat the food brought by their supporters.

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Farmers put 5-point set of demands in 4th round talks, seek new MSP law

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New Delhi, 3 Dec : A group of more than 34 farmer leaders put out a five-point set of demands that seeks to frame a specific law on Minimum Support Price (MSP) and end the punishment provision for stubble burning, during the fourth round of talks with the Central government here on Thursday.

In the written five-point set of demands, one of the key demands is the repeal of three contentious farm laws passed in September during the Monsoon Session of Parliament. It also raises objections about the upcoming Electricity (Amendment) Act, 2020. The farmers emphasised that the provision to register a case for stubble burning should be ended, and asked why the government wasn’t ready to give them “written assurance” on MSP despite its earlier statements that MSP will continue.

The farmer union representatives emphasised that a new law on MSP be framed in a special session of Parliament, demanding that it must guarantee them MSP not only now but in the future as well. The farmer leaders said: “Let us assume that MSP will continue but the procurement would stop. The MSP will have no meaning then”.

The farmer union representatives said that the government says the three farm laws were brought in with the the interests of farmers in mind. However, they had never kept these in mind. They said that the farm laws have been passed to benefit big business and corporate houses. Giving an example of sugarcane procurement, the farmers’ organisations objected to contract farming and pointed out its drawbacks.

The 5-point set of demands came two hours after the ongoing meeting which started around 12.30 p.m. at Vigyan Bhawan in presence of the Centre’s representatives: Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar and Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Minister Piyush Goyal.

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Parkash Singh Badal, Returns Padma Vibhushan Award over Farmers’ Protest

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Chandigarh, 3 Dec : Expressing solidarity with the agitating farmers over the Centre’s farm laws, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) patron Parkash Singh Badal on Thursday returned his Padma Vibhushan award in protest against “the betrayal of the farmers by the government”.

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