Mumbai: The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party notched early leads in the Palghar and Bhandara-Gondiya Lok Sabha bypolls, counting of votes for which in underway on Thursday.
In Palghar, the BJP nominee Rajendra Gavit was leading over his nearest Bahujan Vikas Aghadi rival Baliram Jadhav.
The Shiv Sena' Shriniwas Vanga, Communist Party of India-Marxist's Kiran Gahala and Congress's Damodar Shingada, trailed in that order in the high-stakes elections held on Monday.
In Bhandara-Gondiya, initial reports indicated that BJP's Hemant Patle was leading over his nearest NCP rival Madhukar Kukde, but figures were not announced by the Election Commission.
Elections in both the constituencies were marred by large-scale incidents of malfunctioning EVM-VVPATs with all the opposition parties and ruling ally Shiv Sena hurling allegations of foul play and tampering of the machines.
As per current trends, the BJP appeared strong in both the seats, fulfilling Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis' vow, to win the elections "come what may" -- and his later controversial remarks of using "Saam, Daam, Dand, Bhed" to bag the polls at all costs.