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11 Union and state ministers seeking re-election from UP

These ministers are seeking re-election from their respective constituencies in the state and are banking on the popularity of Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, to reach the winning post…reports Asian Lite News

The prestige of 11 Centre and state ministers is at stake in the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections from Uttar Pradesh (UP).

These ministers are seeking re-election from their respective constituencies in the state and are banking on the popularity of Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, to reach the winning post.

Union Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh, is seeking his third term from Lucknow, a constituency that was once held by former Prime Minister, late Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

The biggest factor that goes in favour of Defence Minister Singh is that he does not have a formidable opponent on this seat as the Samajwadi Party candidate, Ravidas Mehrotra is a comparative lightweight.

Apart from that, Lucknow has a huge BJP voter base and the Shia population in the state capital is also favourably inclined towards the Defence Minister.

All eyes are on Amethi, where Union Minister Smriti Irani is seeking her second term from the constituency.

The minister had defeated senior Congress leader, Rahul Gandhi, in 2019 by a margin of over 55,000 votes.

The Congress is yet to announce its candidate from Amethi and sources say that former party President Rahul Gandhi is not keen to contest from this constituency.

Till the Congress announces its candidate for this seat, the election remains a cakewalk for Smriti Irani.

Another constituency that will have the media’s attention is the Kheri Lok Sabha seat from where Union Minister, Ajay Mishra Teni will be seeking his third term.

Ajay Mishra Teni faced rough weather in October 2021 when his son Ashish Mishra’s SUV ran over four farmers and a journalist at Lakhimpur Kheri during a farmers’ protest march against the now-scrapped farm laws.

Ashish Mishra is now out on bail and the case is running its course in court.

The Samajwadi Party has fielded Utkarsh Varma from the Kheri Lok Sabha seat.

Union Minister Sanjeev Balyan is also seeking a third term from Muzaffarnagar and the BJP’s alliance with the Rashtriya Lok Dal has tilted the balance in his favour.

He is pitted against Harendra Malik of the Samajwadi Party.

Union Minister, Dr Mahendra Pandey, is also seeking re-election from the Chandauli Lok Sabha seat. The Samajwadi Party has fielded former UP Minister, Virendra Singh there.

Union Minister, Dr SP Singh Baghel, is seeking his second term from Agra which is a reserved seat. The SP has fielded Suresh Chandra Kadam from Agra while the BSP has named Pooja Amrohi as its candidate here.

Dr Baghel faces the challenge of preventing a division of Dalit votes in his constituency so that he can win back the seat. However, he is banking on the BJP’s Hindu votes to compensate the depletion of Dalit votes, if any.

Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti is looking for a third term from Fatehpur Lok Sabha seat. The Opposition is yet to finalise its candidates. The constituency goes to polls on May 20.

Another Union Minister seeking re-election is Kaushal Kishore who is the BJP candidate from Mohanlalganj (reserved) seat. The Samajwadi Party has named former UP Minister, RK Chaudhary, as its candidate from this seat. Chaudhary is a popular leader in the constituency and bound to give tough competition to Kaushal Kishore.

Bhanu Pratap Singh Varma is seeking re-election from Jalaun reserved constituency and Anupriya Patel of Apna Dal (S), is contesting from Mirzapur Lok Sabha seat.

Two UP ministers in the fray are Jitin Prasada who has replaced Varun Gandhi as the BJP candidate in Pilibhit and Anoop Valmiki who is contesting the Hathras Lok Sabha seat.

SP replaces 2 candidates in UP

The Samajwadi Party (SP) has released a list of two candidates for the Lok Sabha elections in Uttar Pradesh, scheduled to take place in a few weeks.

The party has named Atul Pradhan from Meerut and Suresh Chandra Kadam from Agra.

Earlier, Bhanu Pratap Singh was to contest from the Meerut seat. Bhanu Pratap is a Supreme Court lawyer.

Bhanu Pratap Singh had formed his own party, the Janhit Sangharsh Party (JSP). He contested the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections from Bulandshahr in 2017, where he got only 1,224 votes while his deposit was confiscated.

More than a week after declaring Rahul Awana as its candidate for Lok Sabha elections in Gautam Buddha Nagar, the SP nominated Mahendra Nagar again.

The SP has so far released seven lists, announcing candidates for 48 seats. As part of a seat-sharing deal with the SP, the Congress will contest in 17 parliamentary constituencies in Uttar Pradesh.

Notably, Mahendra Nagar was on March 16 declared as the SP candidate only to be replaced by Rahul Awana on March 20.

The SP has now fielded Meera Deepak Yadav from the Khajuraho Lok Sabha constituency replacing Manoj Yadav. Meera is a former MLA from Madhya Pradesh’s Niwari seat and is set to challenge the incumbent MP and Madhya Pradesh Bharatiya Janata Party leader, V.D. Sharma, in the upcoming election.

The seven-phase Lok Sabha polls, the world’s biggest election exercise, will commence on April 19 with the counting of votes set to take place on June 4 as Prime Minister Narendra Modi makes a bid for a third consecutive term in office.

Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar said more than 97 crore voters — 49.7 crore males and 47.1 crore females — were eligible to cast their vote in the polling process spread over 44 days and across 10.5 lakh polling booths.

The elections will begin on April 19 followed by subsequent phases on April 26, May 7, May 13, May 20, May 25 and June 1.

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