Uttar Pradesh: Rajya Sabha Defection Bolsters BJP In 7 Lok Sabha Constituencies

Uttar Pradesh: Rajya Sabha Defection Bolsters BJP In 7 Lok Sabha Constituencies

Through these strategic defections during the Rajya Sabha polls, the BJP aims to strengthen its position in Congress bastions, laying the groundwork for its electoral strategy leading up to 2024.

BISWAJEET BANERJEEUpdated: Wednesday, February 28, 2024, 06:51 PM IST
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In a strategic political manoeuvre, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has made significant advances in solidifying its influence in critical constituencies of Uttar Pradesh, particularly Amethi and Rae Bareli, during the recent Rajya Sabha polls where defections aided the ruling party in securing eight out of 10 seats.

The BJP orchestrated an unexpected turn of events by garnering the support of sitting Samajwadi Party (SP) MLAs from the region, notably SP's chief whip Manoj Pandey of Unchahhar in Rae Bareli, who crossed party lines to endorse BJP candidates. This unexpected allegiance shift suggests Pandey's inclination towards the BJP's agenda.

Additionally, three SP lawmakers from the Amethi-Rae Bareli region defected to support BJP candidates, breaching the SP's stronghold, and challenging the Congress bastion of Amethi and Rae Bareli.

The implications of this move go beyond the Rajya Sabha polls, forming a crucial part of the BJP's broader strategy to field strong candidates in the 16 seats it lost in Uttar Pradesh during the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Rae Bareli, the only Lok Sabha constituency in UP won by the Congress in 2019, is among the targeted seats.

Speculations abound regarding Manoj Pandey's potential candidature from Rae Bareli, while BJP leaders affirm their commitment to fielding formidable contenders in the region.

In addition to Manoj Pandey, Rakesh Pratap Singh, the SP MLA from Gauriganj in Amethi, also defected, citing allegiance to "Lord Ram." Meanwhile, Maharaji Prajapati, the SP MLA from Amethi, abstained from voting. Rae Bareli and Amethi are two of the 17 Lok Sabha seats conceded by the SP to the Congress.

Through these strategic defections during the Rajya Sabha polls, the BJP aims to strengthen its position in Congress bastions, laying the groundwork for its electoral strategy leading up to 2024.

Speculation surrounds Rahul Gandhi's Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in Amethi-Rae Bareli, with local party leaders advocating for Rahul to contest from Amethi and Priyanka Gandhi from Rae Bareli, considering Sonia Gandhi's decision to opt for the Rajya Sabha due to health concerns.

Congress president Ajai Rai mentioned that both Rae Bareli and Amethi have been traditionally held by the Gandhi family, indicating deliberations on candidacies for these constituencies.

The BJP's strategy extends to Ambedkar Nagar, where BSP MP Ritesh Pandey joined the BJP with the support of his father Rakesh Pandey, potentially easing the electoral path in that constituency. Additionally, the entry of Abhay Singh into BJP aims to prevent the dispersion of Thakur voters in the Ayodhya region.

In parallel developments, BJP's strategy to gain ground in Ambedkar Nagar, Ayodhya, Prayagraj, and Jalaun has seen key advancements, indicating an intense electoral battleground shaping up in Uttar Pradesh as the political landscape continues to evolve.

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