New Delhi: Biju Janata Dal (BJD) candidate Rita Sahu had a stellar victory in the Bijepur Assembly bypoll in Odisha and won by a record margin of 97,990 votes. She also broke records by getting the highest ever votes in an Assembly election in the state.
The previous highest margin of 94,555 was by Bishwa Bhushan Harichandan in the 2000 Assembly elections.
Rita Sahu secured 1,35,957 votes while her nearest rival Sanat Gartia of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) bagged 37, 967 votes and the Congress candidate managed to get only 5873 votes, said Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Sushil Kumar Lohani.
“I am very happy that the people blessed me with such huge number. I would like to thank the people and the Chief Minister for having faith in me,” said an elated Rita Sahu.
An estimated 72 per cent of the over 2.32 lakh voters exercised their franchise for the by-polls.
In the April 2019 Assembly elections, BJD’s Soumya Ranjan Patnaik had won from Khandapara Assembly seat by a margin of 81,430 votes,. In the last Assembly polls at Bijepur, Naveen Patnaik had won with a margin of 57,122 votes.
The bypoll in Bijepur, which was held on October 21, was necessitated after Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik vacated the seat and retained Hinjli in Ganjam district after winning from two seats in the May 2019 Assembly elections.