Assembly election 2017: BJP takes strong lead in UP, Congress in Punjab

BJP candidates led in 46 of the 73 seats where counting trends were available in UP while in Punjab, Congress was leading in 4 seats in early trends of counting of votes.

The Bharatiya Janata Paraty (BJP) on Saturday took a strong lead over its main rivals in Uttar Pradesh as the millions of votes cast in the staggered assembly election were counted.

BJP candidates led in 46 of the 73 seats where counting trends were available, followed in 20 seats by the Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance.

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) led in seven constituencies.

Election Commission officials said the BJP was leading in most major cities including Allahabad, Lucknow and Kanpur.

In Amethi, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi's Lok Sabha constituency, the BJP's Garima Singh had forged ahead.

Uttar Pradesh voted in February-March to elect a new 403-member house.

CONGRESS LEADING IN 4 SEATS IN PUNJAB

While in Punjab, the Congress was leading in four seats on Saturday in early trends of counting of votes for the 117 assembly seats.

The ruling Akali Dal and new entrant Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) were leading in two seats each.

Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, 89, was leading from his Lambi seat over his rivals Amarinder Singh (Congress) and Jarnal Singh (AAP).

Counting of votes for 117 assembly seats and the by-election to the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat began across Punjab in the morning amid tight security.

The counting, which started at 8 am, is taking place at 54 centres in 27 locations.

The fate of 1,145 candidates, including 81 women, will be decided. A total of 77.4 per cent of the 1.98 crore electors in Punjab voted on February 4.

The counting started amid uncertainty amid the possibility of a hung house.

The main contenders for powers are the Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP combine, the Congress and the AAP.

59 SEATS TO GAIN SIMPLE MAJORITY

A party needs 59 seats to gain a simple majority in the assembly.

The by-election to the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat, vacated by Congress leader Amarinder Singh in November 2016, was also held with the assembly polls.

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