Keen contest on cards in bypolls to 10 Assembly seats in UP

| | Lucknow
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Keen contest on cards in bypolls to 10 Assembly seats in UP

Monday, 24 June 2024 | PTI | Lucknow

With the INDIA Bloc making significant gains against the BJP in Uttar Pradesh in Lok Sabha polls, the by-elections in 10 assembly seats that have fallen vacant are likely to witness a keen contest, with the ruling party under pressure to regain its hold.

 The date for the by-elections has not been announced yet by the Election Commission. However, the Samajwadi Party (SP) and Congress have announced that they will contest together under the INDIA bloc. The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) has also begun its preparations, according to their leaders.

The seats fell vacant after nine assembly members including Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav were elected to Lok Sabha, while SP MLA from Sisamau MLA Irfan Solanki of Kanpur was disqualified after he was sentenced to jail in a criminal case.UP Assembly Special Secretary Brajbhushan Dubey told PTI that information about the vacancy on 10 seats has been sent to the Election Commission.

“As per the procedure, by-elections can be held on these seats within six months,” he said.

Five of these seats were won by the Samajwadi Party in 2022 while one seat was bagged by the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), which was then in alliance with the SP. Three seats were won by the BJP and one seat went into the account of BJP’s ally Nishad Party.

While the by-election results will be numerically inconsequential for the BJP in the state assembly, where it has a comfortable majority, they will impact the morale of both sides as any further losses to the BJP will help the opposition SP and Congress to further cement their gains.

While the SP and the Congress have expressed confidence that they will continue their winning streak, the BJP is also preparing to do “something special” in the by-elections to increase its “credibility”, according to leaders. BJP’s state media in-charge Manish Dixit told PTI that the “NDA will contest the assembly by-elections with full strength. There is no pressure anywhere, rather the NDA will fight the assembly by-elections with full strength. BJP workers are always ready for public service and elections.”

“The party will fight the elections will all its might and the result will be a special achievement,” he said.

On the question of giving seats to alliance partners, he said, ‘The party leadership will decide this but at the level of organisation and government, we have started preparing for the elections with full enthusiasm.’

When Samajwadi Party (SP) chief spokesperson and national secretary Rajendra Chaudhary was asked about it, he said, ‘Preparations for by-elections have been started on all the vacant seats and in alliance with the Congress party, we will fight the elections with full strength and win”.

‘The committee formed for management in the Lok Sabha elections is preparing for these 10 seats and national president Akhilesh Yadav will form a new committee for this after the Parliament session,’ he said.Meanwhile, UP Congress Committee President Ajay Rai said that the “INDIA alliance will fight unitedly in the upcoming by-elections and soon the leaders of the alliance will meet and discuss the seats and election strategy.”

A leader of the Bahujan Samaj Party said that its chief Mayawati has called a meeting of prominent leaders of all states in Lucknow on Sunday, in which the strategy for the by-elections can also be discussed.

In the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, the INDIA bloc won 43 seats out of 80 in the state, with 37 seats going to the SP and six seats to Congress.

On the other hand, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party won 33 seats while its ally Rashtriya Lok Dal won two and Apna Dal (S) got one seat.

The BSP did not open its account in this election.

The BJP and its allies won 73 Lok Sabha seats in 2014 and 64 seats in 2019.

In the 2022 assembly elections, the BJP won a total of 273 seats with its allies.

According to the website of the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly, in the 403-member House, the BJP has 249, its ally Apna Dal (S) has 13, Rashtriya Lok Dal has eight, Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party has six and Nirbal Indian Shoshit Hamara Aam Dal (NISHAD) has five members.

The main opposition SP has 103 members and Congress has two members. Apart from this, there are two members of the Jansatta Dal (Loktantrik) and one member of the Bahujan Samaj Party.

In the by-elections to four assembly constituencies held along with the Lok Sabha elections, two seats each were won by the SP and the BJP, but these MLAs have not taken oath yet.

The MLAs from the NDA who were elected to Lok Sabha are -- Rashtriya Lok Dal’s Chandan Chauhan, BJP’s Atul Garg, Anoop Valmiki and Praveen Patel, Nirbal Indian Shoshit Hamara Aam Dal’s (NISHAD) Vinod Kumar Bin.

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav along with party MLAs Ziaur Rahman, Lalji Verma and Awadhesh Prasad have been elected to Lok Sabha.

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