Union Law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad won the Patna Sahib Lok Sabha constituency on Thursday with a margin of 2,84,657 votes. The Congress’s Shatrughan Sinha, who defected from the Bharatiya Janata Party in March, received 3,22,849 votes.
As results started coming in, Prasad and Sinha emerged as the only candidates left fighting for the seat as their closest contender, Asli Desh Party’s Akhilesh Kumar, faded away from the race. Prasad soared past Sinha with a huge lead in the evening. He polled 61.85% votes as opposed to Sinha’s 32.87% vote share.
The fight to secure the seat in Patna Sahib was crucial for the ruling BJP as Sinha had switched allegiances just a month before the elections. Sinha was elected twice from the constituency, which was created in 2008.
In the run-up to the elections, Sinha was critical of the BJP’s decisions and made appearances at Opposition leaders’ events even though he was still a member of the saffron party. He had joined the saffron party when former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was at the helm. The BJP dropped Sinha and named Prasad as the contender for the seat on March 23.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the first leader since 1971 to be re-elected to office with an outright majority. As of 12.45 pm on Friday, the Election Commission of India has declared results in 538 of 542 constituencies. The BJP has won 302 of them.