Naveen Patnaik's ruling BJD wins the Bijepur by-poll easily

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Bhubaneswar/Bargarh: With only hours remaining for announcement of the result of the Bijepur bypoll, infighting has ensued within Congress with senior party leader Sura Routray bringing backstabbing allegations against a few party leaders.

The by-poll was necessitated due to death of Congress MLA Subal Sahu. "Even though backstabbing efforts were made to defeat party candidate, Congress will win the Bijepur bypoll by a margin of 1,500 to 2,000 votes", he added.

Rita Sahu secured 102871 votes and BJP's Ashok Panigrahy got 60938 votes.

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Naveen Patnaik's Biju Janata Dal delivered a thumping victory in a bypoll that his party and the Bharatiya Janata Party contested like everything was at stake. While the candidate is hopeful of a victory by a margin of 30,000 to 40,000 votes, Rajya Sabha member and BJD spokesperson Prasanna Acharya avoided predicting the margin of victory. Ashok Panigrahi was the BJP candidate and Pranay Sahu the Congress pick for Bijepur. "I'll work for the all-round development of the people in our area and strive hard to fulfil my husband's dream", PTI quoted Sahu as saying. "I would like to express my gratitude to public for showering their blessings on BJD".

The by-poll was held on February 24 in which around 82 percent of voters had exercised their franchise. "We have 12 dedicated squads to ensure free and fair polling in all the places", the CEO said. During this phase, sporadic violence provided fodder to politicking with shoe hurling on Naveen Patnaik at a rally and attack on Labour Minister Sushant Singh's brother pitching the BJD against the saffron party. In 2014 it had won 10 seats. A buoyant BJP was hoping to sail on the surge in three-tier Panchayat polls held in state, exactly around this time a year ago.

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