Several BJP lawmakers fromEastern Uttar Pradesh have reportedly offered to vacate their seats for UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath, a five-term MP from Gorakhpur. Adityanath will have to resign as an MP and get elected to either house of the UP legislature within six months.
As per norms, the chief minister and ministers, not being member of the state legislature, are required to become members of either house of legislature. It is still not clear if Adityanath will prefer to be elected to the assembly or follow the example of his predecessors Akhilesh Yadav and Mayawati, both of whom preferred to become MLCs than become MLAs.
Fateh Bahadur Singh, the BJP MLA from Campierganj, about 34 kilometers from Gorakhpur, confirmed to HT that he has offered to quit his seat. Singh, son of former UP chief minister Vir Bahadur Singh, said, “I have made the offer to ensure progress of Purvanchal. People of Campierganj will feel proud if Yogiji decides to make it his own.”
Vir Bahadur represented Paniyara seat in UP assembly out of which Campierganj was later carved out post delimitation in 2012. Fateh Bahadur isn’t the only one. HT gathered that about a dozen other lawmakers from east UP and few from west too plan to offer their seats to Yogi, a trend with most sitting chief ministers.
In 2001, Congress lawmaker Surendranath Awasthi alias Puttu Awasthi vacated his Haidergarh seat in Barabanki for the then BJP chief minister Rajnath Singh after he was made the CM in the middle of the term. Rajnath later rewarded the Congress MLA by helping him become an MLC.
In 2012 the then Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, after becoming the chief minister of the state, was inundated with offers from his party lawmakers willing to vacate their seats for him. Akhilesh, however, decided not to become an MLA, preferring to become a member of legislative council instead. “If I become MLC, then none of my party MLAs will be required to quit. People have voted for a particular MLA and it will be better if the person gets to serve the people who elected them,” Akhilesh had said then.
Deputy chief minister Keshav Prasad Maurya, an OBC, too will be required to vacate his Phulpur seat from where he is an MP. The other deputy chief minister Dinesh Sharma, who was also the Lucknow mayor, has tendered his resignation as mayor.