The stage is set for counting of votes for by-elections to Lok Sabha constituencies Bhandara-Gondia and Palghar and Palus-Kadegaon Assembly seat in Maharashtra. The bypolls have been a litmus test for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as well as the opposition parties, including the Congress. A positive outcome is necessary for the BJP to maintain its majority in the Lok Sabha.
In Maharashtra’s Palghar and Bhandara-Gondia seats, all four major parties - BJP, Shiv Sena, NCP, and Congress - left no stone unturned to woo the electorates in their favour.
In Maharashtra, Palghar is a reserved seat, which was previously held by the BJP. The seat fell vacant after sitting BJP MP Chintaman Wanga died in January. Chintaman Wanga had been elected from the constituency thrice as a BJP member. However, after his death, his family joined hands with the Shiv Sena.
In Bhandara-Gondia the bye-election was necessitated when BJP’s sitting MP Nana Patole quit the party to join the Congress in December 2017.
The by-poll in Palus-Kadegaon Assembly constituency was necessitated due to the death of Congress’s Patangrao Kadam, who had won the constituency twice. The Election Commission has declared Kadam`s son elected unopposed as the BJP had withdrawn its candidate.