The BJP on Tuesday announced a list of 17 candidates for the Uttar Pradesh polls which did not include Assembly Speaker Hriday Narain Dikshit and minister Swati Singh in it, while Brijesh Pathak’s seat was changed.
The BJP has nominated former joint director of the Enforcement Directorate, Rajeshwar Singh, from the Sarojini Nagar constituency, leaving both husband and wife high and dry.
Meanwhile, the Samajwadi Party has announced its candidates for all other seats in Lucknow but, curiously, kept Sarojini Nagar vacant. This has prompted speculation that Swati Singh may quit the BJP, join the Samajwadi Party and contest the Uttar Pradesh Assembly election from Sarojini Nagar.
Swati Singh was reportedly very upset after the BJP did not nominate her from Sarojini Nagar. Meanwhile, her husband Dayashankar Singh has said he will campaign for the BJP candidate Rajeshwar Singh.
Rajrejeshwar Singh, who has taken voluntary retirement after being deputed to the Enforcement Directorate from the Uttar Pradesh police, has been fielded from Sarojini Nagar, the seat of outgoing minister Swati Singh.
Both Swati Singh and her husband Daya Shankar Singh had been vying for the Sarojini Nagar seat.
Incumbent Lucknow (central) MLA and minister Brijesh Pathak has been fielded from Lucknow Cantonment, burying speculations of the new entrant in the BJP Aparna Yadav, the daughter-in-law of SP patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav, being fielded from there.
Aparna Yadav had contested from the seat in the previous elections but had faced defeat.
According to the BJP’s list, state minister Ashutosh Tandon will contest from his Lucknow east seat.
The Uttar Pradesh Assembly election 2022 will be held from February 10 onwards in seven phases. The counting of votes will take place on March 10.
The last Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh (2017) were held in seven phases. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its allies had won 312 of the state’s 403 Assembly constituencies.
This time, the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls are likely to witness a four-cornered fight between the ruling BJP, Akhilesh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party, the Congress and Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party.
By line: Divya Thearia