New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Anil Dhiman registered a thumping victory in Himachal Pradesh’s Bhoranj bye-election. Dhiman won the Bhoranj seat with a massive margin of 8290 votes. The BJP candidate was pitted against Promila Devi of the Congress who was trailing from the beginning of the counting.

As per the reports of leading news agency PTI, Dhiman polled 24,453 votes against 16,144 votes polled by Congress’s Devi while Pawan Chandel, a BJP rebel who contested as an Independent, polled 4,630 votes.

263 voters opted for NOTA. With this victory, the Bharatiya Janata Party has increased its strength to 28 in the 68-member House.

Since the year 1990, the seat was held by Bharatiya Janata Party stalwart Ishwar Dass Dhiman who had won six successive elections from the Bhoranj constituency. The bye-election was necessitated following the demise of Dhiman in November last year.

There were five candidates in the fray but the main contest was said to be between BJP’s Anil Dhiman and Congress party’s Promila Devi. The election was considered prestige battle for both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress. Over 63 percent turnout was recorded in the bye-election, which took place on April 09.

Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh during the poll campaign had claimed that the Congress would wrest the Bhoranj seat, a party bastion. On the other hand, former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal, who cast his vote at Smirpur polling station, was very much confident of a thumping victory for BJP candidate Anil Dhiman, who is a doctor by profession.