NDA vs INDIA in first bypolls to 13 seats after general elections

The states that go to the polls on Wednesday are Bihar, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh.
Image used for representational purposes only.
Image used for representational purposes only.File Photo | AP

NEW DELHI: With the bypolls for 13 assembly constituencies to be held on Wednesday, the stage is set for another face-off between the NDA and the Opposition INDIA bloc in seven states.

The states that go to the polls are Bihar, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh. Coming on the heels of the 2024 Lok Sabha results, the contest is significant for both sides. The results, which will be declared on July 13, will also be a curtain raiser for important state elections later this year.

The election to the four seats in West Bengal will be keenly watched as three seats fell vacant after BJP MLAs jumped ship to the Trinamool Congress (TMC). While the BJP is trying to leverage its Lok Sabha election leads in three of these segments, the TMC is harping on its recent electoral success. The fourth seat became vacant after the death of the sitting TMC MLA.

Stakes are high in Himachal Pradesh as election will be held in three seats — Dehra, Hamirpur and Nalagarh. It was necessitated after three independent MLAs joined the BJP. The BJP is going all out to win them though the Congress is in the majority with 38 MLAs while the BJP has 27. In Dehra, the Congress has fielded Kamlesh Thakur, wife of Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu, against BJP’s Hoshiyar Singh, who switched sides.

The Vikravandi Assembly constituency in Tamil Nadu is also witnessing a fierce contest between the ruling DMK, NDA ally PMK, and NTK.

The two seats in Uttarakhand — Manglaur and Badrinath — hold significance to both the Congress and the BJP. The Badrinath seat fell vacant after the Congress MLA joined the BJP. The Congress has fielded Qazi Nizamuddin from Manglaur, a traditional Congress seat. While Bihar’s Rupauli is witnessing a contest between the RJD and the JD(U), in Madhya Pradesh, the BJP is taking on the Congress in the tribal-dominated constituency of Amarwara.

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