Bypoll Results: Big Win for SP in Ghosi by Over 25,000 Votes, BJP Loss Blamed on Candidate’s ‘Turncoat’ Image – News18


A security personnel stands guard as voters cast their vote for the Ghosi assembly bypoll on September 5. (Image: PTI)

BJP candidate Dara Singh Chauhan was previously elected MLA from Ghosi on an SP ticket in the 2022 assembly elections, but recently resigned and joined the saffron camp necessitating the bypoll in Ghosi

The Samajwadi Party put all speculation to rest as its candidate Sudhakar Singh registered a thumping win in the Ghosi bypoll in Uttar Pradesh on Friday. Singh defeated BJP’s newly inducted candidate Dara Singh Chauhan with a margin of more than 25,000 votes.

Political analysts said Chauhan’s “party-hopper” image was the main reason behind his loss in Ghosi. They added that the win could work as a morale-booster for the opposition but will hardly make a difference in the upcoming 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Singh thanked the people of Ghosi and called the opposition bloc INDIA a hit. He seemed confident from the beginning as he maintained a comfortable lead. Besides, he said Chauhan lost in Ghosi due to his image of being a turncoat.

In the 2022 assembly elections, Chauhan was elected MLA from the Ghosi seat on an SP ticket. He had defeated BJP’s Vijay Rajbhar by a margin of 22,216 votes. But, in July, he resigned and joined the BJP necessitating a bypoll.

“I think it’s his (BJP candidate Dara Singh Chauhan) image as a party hopper or a loyalty changer that led to his defeat. One must understand that voters, too, are smart and may not change their loyalty according to the needs of the leader. Sudhakar Singh holds a clean image and was a familiar face in the Ghosi constituency, who seemed to be a better option and hence, people voted him to power,” said Shashikant Pandey, head of department of political science at Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University.

Pandey said Chauhan entered politics with the BSP in 1996, switched to the SP in 2000, returned to the BSP in 2009, joined the BJP in 2015, and then the SP in 2022 and came back to the BJP in 2023: this justifies his image of being a turncoat. Singh, meanwhile, had won the Ghosi assembly seat in 2012 by defeating the BSP’s Fagu Chauhan and QED’s Mukhtar Ansari.

The BJP, however, had left no stone unturned to ensure Chauhan’s victory and to woo voters in the OBC, SC and ST categories, who are the core vote bank in this assembly seat. But their candidate’s defeat is a setback for the ruling BJP.

The saffron camp had gone all out during the election campaign, holding a grand ‘Namanka Sabha’ in which almost all its senior leaders, including deputy chief ministers Keshav Prasad Maurya and Brajesh Pathak, Om Prakash Rajbhar and other leaders, held a series of rallies. Not only this, the BJP recently held a drive under which it inducted key leaders, especially those belonging to the SC, ST and OBC communities, in order to strengthen its vote bank in Ghosi.

BJP defeat won’t make much difference in 2024

Pandey further said Chauhan’s defeat in Ghosi might be a morale-booster for the opposition now but it won’t make any difference in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls. “I often hear people saying the Ghosi bypoll is INDIA vs NDA. I don’t think so as this election was at a local level. Also, there are multiple factors that decide a win or loss during the election itself. Ghosi is also an SP stronghold. It may act as a morale-booster but will not make any difference in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls in 2024,” he said.

Dalit voters deciding factor in SP’s victory

Another political analyst, however, gave credit for the SP candidate’s win to Dalit voters, saying it seemed that they voted in favour of the SP. “Ghosi bypoll was totally BJP vs SP as other major parties, including Congress and BSP, backed out. Ghosi assembly constituency has at least 60,000 Rajbhar voters, 50,000 Chauhan (Nonia-OBC), 40,000 Yadavs (all OBC) and 60,000 Dalits. There are close to 90,000 Muslim voters. In this, Dalit voters remained the deciding factor since the BSP did not contest and those in favour of Mayawati’s party seemed to have voted in favour of the SP candidate,” said SK Dwivedi, former HoD of political science at Lucknow University.

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