Pipili by-poll: Whom voters to crown as legislator

Bhubaneswar/Pipili: Ahead of counting of votes for the Pipili by-poll tomorrow, there have been intense debate in political circles on whom the voters to crown as their MLA.

There have been 10 candidates in the fray for the by-poll. Though the result will be declared tomorrow, a strong triangular fight is expected between BJD candidate and late lawmaker Pradeep Maharathy’s son, Rudra Pratap Maharathy, BJP’s Ashrit Pattanayak and Congress’ Bishwokeshan Harichandan Mohapatra.

Congress has already shown its readiness to accept third position in the bypoll.

The party’s senior leader and Jatni legislator Suresh Kumar Routray said, “Both BJD and BJP have tried to influence voters with money whereas Congress never resorted to such tactics. We follow the rules of democracy. We have already informed the Election Commission about the efforts by BJD and BJP to influence the voters. The party is ready to accept the third position in the bypoll.”

BJD spokesperson Lenin Mohanty exudes confidence that the ruling party’s candidate will win the bypoll with over 30,000 margins.

During 2019 poll, Pradeep Maharathy won from the Assembly seat by securing 88,518 votes, 50.66% of votes.

Amid tight security, the Pipili bypoll was held on September 30 in adherence to Covid protocols. The voter turnout during the Pipili bypoll was 78.25% i.e. a total of 1,79,980 voters cast their votes.

A total of 2,29,998 voters were enrolled from the Pipili Assembly constituency for the bypoll. Of them, 1,19,206 were male and 1,10,790 female voters.

Also read: Odisha: Pipili Bypoll Date ANNOUNCED

The data show in 2019, as many as 2,28,805 voters enrolled from the assembly seat.

The bypoll was necessitated after BJD MLA Pradeep Maharathy, who won the Pipili Assembly seat for a record seven times, died due to Covid in October last year.

Initially the by-poll was scheduled on April 17. But the Election Commission of India postponed the by-poll after Congress candidate Ajit Mangaraj died three days before the polling. The by-poll was then rescheduled to May 16.

However, it was deferred again as a lockdown was imposed due to rise in Covid-19 cases.

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