Munda wins Jharkhand by-poll, to stay as chief minister (Lead)

February 17th, 2011 - 2:06 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Ranchi, Feb 17 (IANS) Arjun Munda of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won the Kharsawa by-poll in Jharkhand Thursday, clearing the way for him to continue as chief minister.He won by over 17,000 votes, defeating his nearest rival Krishna Gagarai of the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha-Prajatantrik (JVM-P).

“This is a victory of the people of the state. People of Kharsawa have voted for development,” Munda said after winning.

He needed to win the election to become a member of the assembly within six months of becoming chief minister - a constitutional necessity. He was sworn in as chief minister in September.

Counting began at 8 a.m. Till the third round, Munda was trailing behind Gagarai by 860 votes, but he edged past in the subsequent rounds. Munda secured 61,701 votes while rival Gagarai got 44,335 votes.

Munda had won from Kharsawa in 1995 on a Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) ticket. He joined the BJP just before the 2000 assembly elections. He again won the seat in 2000 and 2005 on a BJP ticket.

In 2009, BJP’s Mangal Singh Soy had won the seat. He resigned last year to facilitate Munda’s election to the assembly.

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