Uttar Pradesh: BSP to field candidate for Rajya Sabha polls, papers to be filed on October 26
In the 2018 RS election, BSP candidate had lost, despite the combined support by both the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the CongressUpdated: Oct 23, 2020, 09:46 IST
The decision of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) to field Ramji Gautam as a candidate for the upcoming Rajya Sabha (RS) election, slated to be held on November 9 for nine vacant Upper House seats from Uttar Pradesh (UP), has set the stage for an interesting contest.
It is still an open-ended question, whether the BSP will be able to avenge the defeat of its candidate in the RS election that was held in March, 2018, or the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will manage to break into the opposition’s ranks to grab the ninth seat for the Upper House from UP.
In the 2018 RS election, BSP candidate Bhimrao Ambedkar had lost, despite the combined support by both the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Congress.
Ambedkar had lost because of the cross-voting by the BSP lawmakers and the BJP’s successful bid to win over the support of the independent legislators.
Lalji Verma, a BSP leader in the UP legislative assembly, said that Gautam would file his nomination papers on Monday (October 26), as the party’s candidate for the upcoming RS polls.
The BSP would send Gautam to the Upper House on the basis of support from other opposition parties, he claimed.
The BJP, which has 304 lawmakers in the 404-member UP legislative assembly, is sitting pretty and is all set to send at least eight candidates from the state to the RS.
The SP, which enjoys the support of 48 MLAs, can, at best, send one candidate to the RS. The party has nominated Ram Gopal Yadav for a berth in the Upper House.
Yadav had filed his nomination papers on Wednesday.
The SP had supported the BSP in the 2018 RS polls because of the bonhomie between the two parties before the last year’s parliamentary elections.
BSP leaders are hopeful that the SP will make its stand clear after Gautam files his nomination papers on Monday.
Though the Congress has seven legislators, two of its rebel lawmakers are likely to support the BJP candidates.
The BSP is also banking on the support from Om Prakash Rajbhar’s Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party (SBSP), which has four lawmakers and the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) that has a lone legislator.
The BSP has its task cut out to get Gautam elected to the Upper House following the rebellion of party lawmakers Anil Singh and Ramvir Upadhyay. While another legislator Mukhtar Ansari is languishing in Punjab’s Ropar Jail for the past 22 months over a litany of criminal charges.
The BJP, which will be left with 16 additional votes, is banking on the support of alliance partner Apna Dal (Sonelal), which has nine legislators, and rebel Congress and BSP lawmakers in a bid to repeat its 2018 feat of winning the ninth RS seat from UP.