The ruling BJP appeared set to retain six seats while the Samajwadi Party may get re-elected from the one it held earlier as counting of votes in the bypolls for seven Uttar Pradesh Assembly constituencies continued on Tuesday.
BJP's Usha Sirohi was leading in Bulandshahr, Prem Pal Dhangar in Tundla, Shrikant Katiyar in Bangarmau, Satya Prakash Mani Tripathi in Deoria, Upendra Nath Paswan in Ghatampur and Sangeeta Chauhan in Naugawan Sadat, according to the latest trends.
In Malhani, SP's Lucky Yadav was ahead of independent candidate Dhananjay Singh by 5,705 votes. The seat was earlier with SP's Lucky Yadav's father Parasnath Yadav.
A tough contest was on for the Naugawan Sadat seat held earlier by Chetan Chauhan, the former cricketer who was minister in Yogi Adityanath's BJP government. His wife Sangeeta Chauhan, who is the BJP candidate, was ahead of the SP's Javed Abbas by 5,310 votes there.
In Bulandshahr, BJP's Usha Sirohi was leading by 13,210 votes over Bahujan Samaj Party's Mohammed Yunus.
In Tundla, BJP's Prempal Singh Dhanghar was ahead of SP's Mahraj Singh Dhangar by 10,858 votes.
BJP's Shrikant Katiyar was leading by 20,125 votes over Arti Bajpai of the Congress in Bangarmau.
In Ghatampur, BJP's Upendra Nath Paswan was leading by 16,537 votes over the BSP's Kuldeep Shankhwar. In Deoria, BJP's Satyaprakash Mani Tripathi had a lead of 14,356 over SP's Brahma Shankar Tripathi.
The bypolls for the seven UP seats recorded a voter turnout of 53 per cent on November 3, when 88 candidates were in the fray.
Barring Malhani, which was with the SP, the other six seats were earlier held by the BJP.
The Naugawan Sadat seat fell vacant after the death of minister Chetan Chauhan who died of COVID-19. The Ghatampur constituency in Kanpur Nagar district was held by another minister, Kamal Rani Varun, who too died of the disease.
The Tundla seat fell vacant after its MLA S P Singh Baghel was elected to the Lok Sabha. The Bangarmau seat in Unnao was vacated by BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar after his conviction in a rape case.
The bypolls to the Bulandshahr, Deoria and Malhani seats were necessitated by the deaths of BJP MLAs Virendra Singh Sirohi and Janmejay Singh, and SP's Parasnath Yadav.
Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad's Azad Samaj Party has fielded Mohammad Yameen from Bulandshahr to test its electoral popularity.
The Bulandshahr seat had the highest number of 18 candidates while Ghatampur seat had the lowest of six.
Sixteen candidates were in the fray in Malhani, 14 each in Naugawan Sadat and Deoria and 10 each in Bangarmau and Tundla. If the trends hold, the 403-member assembly will again have 310 MLAs from the BJP and 49 from the SP.
It also has 18 members from the BSP, nine from Apna Dal (Sonelal), seven from Congress, four from Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party and five MLAs who are independents or belong to smaller parties.
The Allahabad High Court had asked the Election Commission to also hold bypolls in Suar after annulling the election there of Abdullah Azam Khan, son of SP MP Mohammad Azam Khan, ruling that he was underage.
But the Supreme Court recently stayed its directions.