Zero Seats, Poll Drubbing: What Makes Congress Upbeat Despite Poor Show in UP Bypolls

Lucknow: Although the Congress failed to open its account in the 11 seats that went for bypolls in Uttar Pradesh, the significant rise in vote share has upped the party’s morale in preparing it for the 2022 state assembly elections.

The bypolls on 11 seats in Uttar Pradesh might not have given a single seat to the Congress but the rise in vote share of the party has given a boost to the party in Uttar Pradesh ahead of 2022 state assembly polls.

Out of the total 11 seats that went to polls, eight went to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its allies and three went to the Samajwadi Party (SP). Both Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Congress finished at third position but the BSP fared much worse than the grand old party. Not only did it fail to retain its Jabalpur seat, it also lost vote share in six seats of the 11 seats.

The continuous efforts of All India Congress Committee general secretary Priyanka Gandhi seem to have delivered results for the party. Gandhi had frequently targeted the BJP-led state government in state over law and order situation and administrational issues. She had also staged protests against the Yogi Adityanath government.

In the 2017 state assembly elections, the Congress party had bagged mere 6.25 per cent votes, its lowest share in the state ever. However, in big relief this time, the party has bagged 12.80 per cent votes. On the other hand, despite winning eight out of its earlier held nine seats, the situation is not very bright for the BJP as its vote share has decreased by 14 per cent.

“The vote share of Congress has doubled in the assembly bypolls. This is the beginning of a change. The Congress respects the mandate given by the people of Uttar Pradesh. Also, I would like to thank all the workers and leaders of Congress who worked hard,” tweeted the newly appointed Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee Chief Ajay Kumar.

Earlier on Thursday, Priyanka Gandhi had attacked the UP government for allegedly manipulating the counting of votes for bypolls in Gangoh assembly seat after the grand old party’s Noman Masood lost to BJP’s Kirat Singh by over 5,000 votes. Masood was leading in the initial rounds but towards the end, he lost to Singh by a margin of 5,419 votes.

Addressing the media, Gandhi said: “The BJP is so arrogant that our candidate was sent out of the counting centre. The party’s minister wants to change the decision of the people. He called the DM five times to reduce the lead. This is an insult of democracy. The Congress will fight for this and we demand an inquiry into the matter by the Election Commission.”