UP election: Akhilesh to make his debut in state polls from Mainpuri

UP election: Yadav, who is an MP from Azamgarh seat, had said on Wednesday that he would decide on contesting the February 10 elections after talking to the people of his parliamentary constituency.
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav addresses a press conference over his party's election manifesto at the party office, in Lucknow on Thursday. He is likely to contest from Mainpuri in the February polls. (ANI)
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav addresses a press conference over his party's election manifesto at the party office, in Lucknow on Thursday. He is likely to contest from Mainpuri in the February polls. (ANI)
Updated on Jan 21, 2022 03:10 AM IST
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By, Lucknow

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav will contest the Uttar Pradesh election from Karhal constituency in Mainpuri district, party’s national spokesperson Ashutosh Verma said.

The party, however, is yet to make a formal announcement in this regard, he added.

“Our national president Akhilesh Yadav will contest from Karhal seat,” Verma said.

Confirming the decision, party national secretary and spokesperson Rajendra Chaudhary said: “It’s final, but we have not made a formal announcement yet.”

According to people familiar with the development, the party is likely to make former SP MP from Mainpuri and Akhilesh’s grand nephew, Tej Pratap Yadav, incharge of the district.

Yadav, who is an MP from Azamgarh seat, had said on Wednesday that he would decide on contesting the February 10 elections after talking to the people of his parliamentary constituency.

“If I decide to contest, I will contest (2022 assembly elections) with the permission of the people of Azamgarh, who got me elected to the Lok Sabha,” Yadav, the parliamentarian from Azamgarh, told reporters at SP HQ in Lucknow.

While the state elections are scheduled to be held in seven phases from February 10 to March 7, voting in Karhal seat is scheduled to be held in the third phase, on February 20.

Mainpuri has traditionally been a SP stronghold. SP founder Mulayam Singh Yadav represents the Mainpuri constituency in Parliament.

In the 2017 assembly polls, SP candidate Sobran Yadav had secured 1.04 lakh votes from Karhal, defeating the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s Prem Shakya by 38,405 votes.

Karhal has remained a stronghold of the Samajwadi Party since 1993. It was only in 2002 that the seat went to the BJP.

Ever since chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s candidature from his Gorakhpur, the BJP’s stronghold, was announced, speculations are rife that Akhilesh would also be contesting the polls.

Both Yogi and Akhilesh have remained MPs in the past but never contested the assembly elections. The two took the Vidhan Parishad route to become members of the state legislature and then chief ministers.

“If the party decides (on my candidature, then I will contest. We have many seats to choose from as Netaji (SP founder and Akhilesh’s father Mulayam Singh Yadav) had contested many assembly elections -- in Sambhal, Firozabad, Etah, Mainpuri, Shahjahanpur and Azamgarh. I can contest from any of these assembly seats.” Akhilesh had said earlier this month.

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Thursday, May 26, 2022