LUCKNOW: In politically crucial Uttar Pradesh, the bypolls to 11 Assembly seats, which were being seen as a litmus test for the Yogi Adityanath government, the saffron brigade has won five of the six seats for which results have been declared.
Lucknow Cant, Govindnagar, (Kanpur), Pratapgarh, Balha (Bahriach) and Gangoh have all gone to the ruling BJP and its allies while Zaidpur in Barabanki was won by the Samajwadi Party.
Of the 11 seats which went to the polls on October 21, the BJP was holding nine while the other two were held by the SP and BSP in Rampur and Jalapur respectively.
Meanwhile, the Congress was leading comfortably in Gangoh. If the Congress manages to wrest Gangoh in Saharanpur where it had fielded Noman Masood, the relative of Congress strongman Imran Masood, it will come as a major morale booster for partymen. The grand old party fared better than the BSP which tried its luck for the first time in a major shift from its policy of not contesting byelections.
Of the 11 seats which witnessed an electoral battle, the SP remained the major rival to the ruling party. It remained in second position in five seats.
The BJP currently has 302 members out of 403 in the Assembly. The bypolls were a four-cornered contest with the BJP, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Samajwadi Party (SP) and Congress fielding candidates in all the 11 assembly seats.