Chitrakoot by-poll: Shivraj Singh Chouhan concedes defeat, had spent 3 days in campaigning

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Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has conceded defeat in Chitrakoot assembly by-elections on Sunday. After the 12th round counting, Congress candidate Nilanshu Chaturvedi defeated his BJP rival Shankar Dayal Tripathi by 14,333 votes.

Chaturvedi polled 66,810 votes as against Tripathi’s 52,677 votes, returning officer A P Dwivedi said.

(AP Photo/Ashwini Bhatia)

Chouhan said that he respected the mandate of the people while promising that the development work in the area will not stop.

The by-poll results assumes significance because Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had spent three days in campaigning and addressing 64 rallies for the saffron party candidate. More than a dozen cabinet ministers had also campaigned for Tripathi.

Chitrakoot seat has traditionally been a Congress bastion, but the party had lost this seat in 2008 assembly polls.

The counting of votes polled in the 9 November by-election began at around 8 AM amid tight security. Chaturvedi was leading by 6,000 votes over Tripathi at the end of the sixth round of counting, an election official said.

Around 65 per cent voting was recorded in the bypoll necessitated following the death of sitting Congress MLA Prem Singh. Singh had won the assembly constituency, bordering Uttar Pradesh, in 1998, 2003 and 2013 elections. However, he had lost the seat to BJP’s Surendra Singh Gaharwar in the 2008 polls.

Though 12 candidates contested the by-election, the main fight was between Chaturvedi and Tripathi.

The Congress’s victory in the Chitrakoot Assembly bypoll in Madhya Pradesh signals the “winds of change” blowing in the political landscape in the country, its chief spokesperson said today.

Taking to Twitter, Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala thanked the voters for reposing faith in the party.

“The winds of change are in the air. Many thanks to the people of #Chitrakoot for their faith and trust in the Congress party,” Surjewala said.

Congress candidate Nilanshu Chaturvedi defeated the ruling BJP’s Shankar Dayal Tripathi by a margin of over 14,000 votes today.

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