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BJP shines in Uttar Pradesh local body polls; Congress fails

Lucknow The BJP swept urban local body elections in Uttar Pradesh winning 10 of 12 mayoral posts in municipal corporations with Congress failing to open its account.

BJP candidates won mayoral elections in Ghaziabad, Lucknow, Kanpur, Meerut, Agra, Gorakhpur, Moradabad, Aligarh, Jhansi and Varanasi, whereas Bareilly seat went to ruling SP backed nominee I S Tomar and a BSP supported candidate won in Allahabad, state election commission officials said.

In Ghaziabad which witnessed protests by BJP supporters, who alleged gross irregularities in the counting of votes and staged a sit-in demanding recounting, party candidate Mr Teluram defeated his nearest rival Mr Sughan by a margin of 9583 votes.

Jagatveer Singh Dron of BJP defeated his nearest rival Pawan Gupta of Congress by a margin of 53,323 votes and retained the Kanpur seat.

In Moradabad, BJP candidate Veena Agarwal defeated her nearest rival Humanu Kabir of Peace Party by a margin of 70,111, whereas its candidate Shakuntala Bharati defeated independent Razia Khan in Aligarh by a margin of 41,834 votes.

BJP's Satya Pandey defeated Surhita Kareem of Congress in Gorakhpur by a margin of 33,156 votes, while Kiran Raju Bookseller of BJP defeated Nirmala Bilharia of Congress by a margin of 25,659 votes in Jhansi.

In Lucknow, where BJP performed poorly during assembly elections, party candidate Dinesh Sharma won the seat for the second consecutive term defeating Neeraj Bora of Congress by a margin of more than 1,71,824 votes.

In Meerut, Harikant Ahluwalia of BJP defeated SP-backed Rajeeq Ansari by a margin of 70,806 votes, whereas in Agra party candidate Indrajeet Arya defeated BSP backed Kartar Singh Bhartiya by a margin of 12,467.

Ruling SP backed candidate I S Tomar defeated BJP's Gulshan Anand by a margin of 47,128 votes in Bareilly.

Abhilasha Gupta, wife of former cabinet minister in BSP government Nand Gopal Gupta alias Nandi, defeated Kamla Singh of BJP by a margin of 59,555 votes in Allahabad.

By winning 10 seats, BJP upped its tally as compared to 2007 elections when the party won eight seats.

Congress, which won three mayoral seats, including Jhansi, Allahabad and Bareilly in the last municipal poll, failed to open its account this time.

"Municipal election results prove that after assembly polls people have once again rejected Congress," BJP spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathak said.

He said urban local body elections would set the tone for Lok Sabha elections in 2014.

"People are looking towards BJP as they are fed up with the policies of all other opposition parties," Pathak claimed.

Elections were held for 12 municipal corporations, 186 Nagar Palika Parishads and 388 Nagar Panchayats.

Congress and BJP contested elections on party symbol, while BSP and SP, though allowed their workers to contest polls, did not allot party symbols.

However, the results are subject to the outcome of a writ petition filed in the Supreme Court challenging reservation in the local bodies.

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