New Delhi: Results of Himachal Pradesh’s Bhoranj bye-election will be declared today as the counting of votes expected to begin at 8 AM. The seat was formerly held by BJP stalwart Ishwar Dass Dhiman who had won six successive elections from the constituency since 1990. The bye-election was necessitated following Dhiman’s demise in November last year.
There are five candidates in the fray but the main contest is said to be between Anil Dhiman of BJP and Promila Devi of Congress. Of the three Independents in the fray, Pawan Chandel and Romesh Dogra are rebels of BJP and Congress, respectively. The election is considered important for both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress as it is likely to set the trend for assembly elections in the state, due later this year.
Over 63 per cent voting was registered in the bye-election, which took place on April 09. During the polling, some technical snag in EVMs were reported following which the voting was delayed by an hour, however, the polling process remained peaceful and no untoward incident was reported from any part of the constituency.
Former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal, who cast his vote at Smirpur polling station, was confident of a thumping victory for BJP candidate Dr Anil Dhiman. While addressing a rally ahead of bye-election, Dhumal had said that he want to celebrate two festivals. “On April 9, the day Bhoranj assembly constituency votes, I want to celebrate Navratras while on April 13, the day of counting I will celebrate Baisakhi at the booth or sector that polls the highest number of votes for the BJP.”
Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh had also claimed that the Congress would wrest the Bhoranj seat, a party bastion.