Bhandara-Gondiya Lok Sabha bypoll counting live on May 31: The seat, which fell vacant after BJP’s Nana Patole defected to the Congress, registered a voter turnout of 42 per cent. At least 34 polling booths faced EVM glitches.
Voting was temporarily suspended at 34 polling booths in Bhandara–Gondiya seat due to faulty Electronic Voting Machines (EVM). According to Gondia Sub-Divisional Officer Anant Walaskar, "the problem was noticed in these centres in terms of the paper trail (VVPAT) not working. We suspended the polling. It was resumed at one center now after the machine started working well." BJP's Hemant Patel is pitted against NCP's Madhukar Kukde here. NCP leader and MP from the constituency Praful Patel is set to address a press conference soon on the matter.
The Bhandara-Gondiya seat fell vacant after BJP’s Nana Patole defected to the Congress. This bypoll is likely to witness a direct contest between NCP’s Madhukar Kukade and BJP’s Hemant Patel. Patel belongs to the Powar community that has a strong hold over the region.
The Congress-NCP alliance is hoping to halt the BJP juggernaut, but their biggest challenge will be to survive the smaller regional parties who are also contesting the election. Also, people from 12 villages are boycotting the election to protest a lack of basic amenities like drinking water and claim that their demands have not been taken seriously by politicians. It will be a challenge for political parties to get them to the polling station.
The Lok Sabha by-polls for the Palghar constituency in Maharashtra will also be held on Monday.