In Odisha, Pipili bypoll peaceful; sees 68% turnout

The Assembly segment is a stronghold of the ruling BJD, which has won the seat since 2000.

The by-elections to Pipli Assembly constituency in Odisha passed off peacefully on Thursday with a voter turnout of 68.40 per cent by 5 pm, officials said.

The Assembly segment is a stronghold of the ruling BJD, which has won the seat since 2000.

With Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan campaigning for the bypolls, opposition BJP is hoping to wrest it. The Congress, too, is in the race.

The bypolls were necessitated by the death of BJD lawmaker Pradeep Maharathy, who had won the seat a record seven times, due to Covid-19 infection last October. The by-election was first scheduled for April 17, but it was deferred after Congress candidate Ajit Mangaraj died of Covid-related complications three days before the polling date.

It was rescheduled to May 16 but was deferred again due to the second wave of the pandemic.

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