Congress pulls out of Karhal contest in Mainpuri against Akhilesh Yadav

Updated on Feb 01, 2022 08:34 PM IST

UP election 2022: Mainpuri Congress chief Gopal Kulshrestha said they received instructions from the Congress leadership not to field a candidate in Karhal from where Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav is contesting.

UP election 2022: The Congress has decided against fielding a candidate against Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav who filed his nomination papers from Mainpuri’s Karhal seat. (HT Photo/Sakib Ali)
UP election 2022: The Congress has decided against fielding a candidate against Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav who filed his nomination papers from Mainpuri’s Karhal seat. (HT Photo/Sakib Ali)
ByHT Correspondent

AGRA: The Congress on Tuesday stopped its candidate from filing her nomination papers from Mainpuri’s Karhal assembly seat from where Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav is a candidate.

“Gyanwati Devi was the Congress candidate for Karhal seat. However, on instructions from the party high command, she was asked not to file her nomination,” Gopal Kulshrestha, Congress’s district president of Mainpuri, which is going to polls in the third phase of the assembly elections on February 20, said on the party’s last-minute decision.

Tuesday was the last date for filing nomination papers for the Karhal seat which has been a stronghold of the SP since 1993, with only one exception. In the 2002 assembly election, the seat went to the BJP. Mainpuri, in which the Karhal assembly segment falls, is SP chief patron Mulayam Singh Yadav’s Lok Sabha constituency.

Also Read: BJP pits Union minister of state SP Singh Baghel against Akhilesh Yadav in Karhal

Samajwadi Party candidate and former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav filed his nomination on Monday, the first time that the four-time Member of Parliament (MP) is contesting an assembly seat.

Shortly afterwards, the BJP named Agra MP and Union minister of state SP Baghel from the seat.

Baghel, a former UP Police sub-inspector, was once a security officer of former UP chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav who brought him into politics.

This is the second time Baghel is contesting against Akhilesh Yadav, the first occasion was the 2009 Lok Sabha election from Firozabad.

Akhilesh Yadav will be Baghel’s third poll rival from Mulayam Singh Yadav’s family in the last 13 years. The other two were Akhilesh’s wife Dimple Yadav in the 2009 Firozabad Lok Sabha by-election and Mulayam’s cousin Ram Gopal Yadav’s son Akshay in the 2014 Lok Sabha election from Firozabad. Baghel had lost on both occasions.

“Party candidates will be contesting the other three assembly seats of Mainpuri district. Vinita Shakya is Congress candidate for Mainpuri Sadar seat, while Prof Vijay Narain is candidate from Kisni seat, and Mamta Rajput is candidate from Bhongaon seat,” Gopal Kulshrestha added.

The Samajwadi Party won three assembly seats of Kisni, Karhal and Mainpuri Sadar but lost Bhongaon seat to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the 2017 assembly elections.

The nomination process for the polls in the district began on January 25 and continued till 3 pm on Tuesday.

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