Congress faces worst phase in parliamentary history as its lone member in Council retires

| | Lucknow
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Congress faces worst phase in parliamentary history as its lone member in Council retires

Thursday, 07 July 2022 | PNS | Lucknow

Going through its worst phase, Indian National Congress faces yet another major setback as for the first time the oldest political outfit of the country will have no member in the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council.

Deepak Singh, the lone Congress member in the UP Legislative Council retired on Wednesday.

In the last UP assembly elections, Congress was confined to just two seats.

Not only Congress Bahujan Samaj Party will now have just one member each in both the Houses of the UP legislature as three of its members in the council completed their terms on Wednesday.

A total of 10 members retired from the UP Legislative Council on Wednesday, including Jagjivan Prasad, Balram Yadav, Dr Kamlesh Kumar Pathak, Ranvijay Singh, Ramsunder Nishad and Shatruddha Prakash of the Samajwadi Party (SP). Apart from this, the tenures of BSP MLCs Atar Singh Rao, Suresh Kumar Kashyap and Dinesh Chandra also ended on Wednesday.

The tenures of two MLCs of Bharatiya Janata Party also ended on Wednesday. However, these two BJP members have been elected to the council again. The two members are Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya and Panchayati Raj Minister Chaudhary Bhupendra Singh.

The legislative council was formed in Uttar Pradesh, then United Provinces, on January 5, 1887 and its first meeting was held on January 8, 1887 at Thornhill Memorial Hall in Allahabad. Then it used to have nine members. Under the provisions made in 1909, the number of members was increased to 46, which included 26 non-official members. Of these members, 20 were elected and six were nominated. Motilal Nehru took the membership of the legislative council on February 7, 1909. He is considered to be the first member of Congress in the legislative council. However, he resigned in 1920 under the policy of non-cooperation with the Congress government. UP was then known as the United Provinces.

After independence, till 1989, the leader of the house in the legislative council was from Congress, with the exception of 1977 and 1979 when this post was with Janata Party.

In the last 33 years, the Congress strength has been shrinking in the UP assembly. In the assembly elections held this time, Congress reached its lowest position in terms of number of members. Only two MLAs of the Congress won and got less than 2.5 per cent votes. This was bound to have an effect on its membership in the UP Legislative Council.

In view of the current circumstances, hope of Congress representation in the upper House of UP Legislature is a distant possibility.

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