Both the seats -- one reserved for teachers and the other for graduates -- were won by the Samajwadi Party candidates.

Narendra Modi
news Politics Sunday, December 06, 2020 - 11:22
Written by  PTI

In a major setback for the BJP in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Varanasi constituency, the party has lost two seats in the legislative council elections

Both the seats -- one reserved for teachers and the other for graduates -- were won by the Samajwadi Party candidates.

Samajwadi Party's Ashutosh Sinha won the Varanasi Graduates' seat a day after his party colleague Lal Bihari Yadav won from the teachers' constituency.

Lal Bihari Yadav, the Samajwadi winner in the Varanasi teachers' constituency, said, "It is a big victory for the party. I am very happy with the result."

With results for two seats still pending, the BJP has won four of the 11 seats, the Samajwadi Party three and independent candidates won two.

Despite a favourable tally for the ruling party, the Samajwadi Party's gains in the BJP stronghold have surprised many.

Uttar Pradesh is one of the six states in India with a bicameral legislature, with two Houses -- the Vidhan Sabha or the Legislative Assembly and the Vidhan Parishad or the Legislative Council. The state legislative council has 100 members.

Meanwhile, polling was held on December 1 for 11 seats in the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council on the five seats of the graduates and six seats in the teachers' constituency.

The term of the members had expired on May 6 but the elections had to be postponed due to the pandemic.

The Samajwadi Party (SP) and the BJP bagged two seats each in the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council election to the Graduates' constituencies, while counting of votes was underway on one seat.

BJP candidates Manvendra Pratap Singh 'Guru Ji' won the Agra Division Graduates' seat and Dinesh Goyal won the Meerut Graduates' seat, while SP's Ashutosh Sinha won Varanasi Division Graduates' seat and Maan Singh Yadav won from the Allahabad-Jhansi Division Graduates' seat, the election office said.

While the SP has wrested the Varanasi and the Allahabad-Jhansi seats from the BJP, it lost the Agra seat to the saffron party.

Counting of votes for the Lucknow Graduates' seat was continuing, and the results are expected late in the night, UP's Chief Electoral Officer Ajay Kumar Shukla said.

On Friday, the results for six teachers' constituency seats were declared of which three were taken by the BJP, one by the SP and two by independents.

BJP's Umesh Dwivedi, Shrishchandra Sharma and Hari Singh Dhillon were declared winners from Lucknow, Meerut and Bareilly-Moradabad teachers' constituencies respectively.

SP candidates Lal Bihari Yadav won from Varanasi teachers' constituency, and independents Akash Agarwal and Dhruv Kumar Tripathi won from the Agra and the Faizabad teachers' constituencies respectively.

Polling was held on Tuesday for 11 seats -- five reserved for graduates and six for teachers. The BJP, SP, Congress and the teachers' associations contested the polls, with 199 candidates in the fray.

The term of office of the MLCs from these constituencies had expired on May 6.

Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav issued a statement alleging that the BJP attacked police in Jhansi, fearing defeat and demanded immediate arrest of the culprits.

Thousands of ballot papers were cancelled in Agra, where people are agitated over it, Yadav said.