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Needmore seats to Win
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3-min read

Four Interesting Reasons Why Congress' Win in Jharkhand Bypoll is Significant

The consecutive win of the Congress even in the BJP bastion, makes it significant for the party and to have an important role in the 'mahagathbandhan' which earlier struggled for more space.

Suhas Munshi | News18.com

Updated:December 25, 2018, 5:52 PM IST
Four Interesting Reasons Why Congress' Win in Jharkhand Bypoll is Significant
Representative image.
The celebratory mood for the Congress, after grabbing three BJP-ruled states in the assembly elections, isn’t clearly ending soon.

Definitely not after a convincing win over the BJP and Jharkhand Party in Kolebira assembly seat, which is also the third defeat for the BJP in the recently held state bypolls.

While Kunvarji Bavaliya, a five time MLA in Gujarat assembly, won in Jasdan bypoll after switching from the Congress to the BJP, a more interesting story unfolded in Kolebira on Sunday. Let’s take a quick look why:​

1. The BJP lost three assembly bypolls this year

Three bypolls have been conducted in Jharkhand this year - Gomia, Silli and in Kolebira. The first two were won by Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) and the third by the Congress. Three successive losses will put in question the leadership of Raghubar Das as the chief minister of the state that is going to contest assembly polls and Lok Sabha polls next year.

Congress' win in Kolebria seat also happens to fall under the Parliamentary constituency of Kariya Munda, the former deputy Lok Sabha speaker and former central cabinet minister in Atal Bihari Vajpayee's government, and seven times MP from Khunti.

2. Congress won against the BJP and the JMM

The Kolebira seat was a three way contest between the Congress, the BJP and the Jharkhand Party. Menon Ekka the candidate of the Jharkhand Party had received direct support from the JMM chief's son and former CM Hemant Soren. The Jharkhand Party's candidate had won the seat back in 2014 but was disqualified after his conviction in a case of assaulting a government servant.

Enos Ekka whose disqualification necessitated the bypoll, had been winning the Kolebira seat since 2005. Congress returns to power here after 14 years.

The victory of Congress is significant considering that it wasn't even in the competition during the previous polls held here. In '14, the Congress had won just 8.66% votes, the BJP had bagged 25.74% votes and JP 39.58% votes.

But it managed to swing around and get 33.93% votes in the bypoll.

3. Congress put on an equal footing in ‘Mahagathbandhan’

The JMM, which had been pitching itself as the 'elder brother' in Jharkhand 'mahagathbandhan', might agree to give some more space to Congress in talks for both Lok Sabha and state assembly elections.

Given that both the JMM and the Congress were in direct fight for Kolebira, the final election in the state before LS polls, Congress win will help bargain better.

Just two days before the bypoll results, perhaps sensing Congress’ victory, Hemant Soren publicly said, “JMM is ready to give maximum number of seats to Congress to let the Mahagathbandhan come in power at the Centre."

He added that "face of the alliance" for assembly elections too was not a big issue. "Non-BJP parties are intact to remove the Raghubar-led Das government and best decisions will be taken in due course of time, including the face of the alliance."

4. The BJP has won only 1 of 7 bypolls since 2014

The saffron party that came to power in Jharkhand with 43 seats, the highest any party has ever got, has suffered from successive losses in assembly polls.

Since 2015, when the Congress snatched away the BJP's seat in Lohadaga, both the Congress and the JMM have expanded or retained their constituencies at BJP's expense.

At the end of seven bypolls, the JMM has retained three seats, BJP has retained one, and Congress has retained one and won two other seats.

(Get detailed and live results of each and every seat in the Lok Sabha elections and state Assembly elections in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim to know which candidate/party is leading or trailing and to know who has won and who has lost and by what margin. Our one-of-its-kind Election Analytics Centre lets you don a psephologist’s hat and turn into an election expert. Know interesting facts and trivia about the elections and see our informative graphics. Elections = News18)
| Edited by: Anu Parthiban
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