UP Elections 2022: Voting for 59 seats in fourth phase tomorrow, litmus test for BJP in Lakhimpur

UP Elections 2022: Voting for 59 seats in fourth phase tomorrow, litmus test for BJP in Lakhimpur

Voting for 59 Assembly constituencies spread across nine districts of Uttar Pradesh will take place in fourth of the seven-phased polls on Wednesday. The polling will decide the fate of 624 candidates is districts of Pilibhit, Lakhimpur Kheri, Sitapur, Hardoi, Unnao, Lucknow, Rae Bareli, Banda and Fatehpur. 

Of these 59 seats, the BJP had won 51 in the 2017 Assembly polls, four had gone to the Samajwadi Party, and three to the Bahujan Samaj Party. 

The high-decibel campaigning for this phase saw Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Minister Amit Shah and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath launching all-out attacks on the Opposition over the governance under their regime. On the other hand, Samajwadi Party and the Congress cornered the BJP over the Lakhimpur Kheri violence and the alleged agrarian crisis in the state. 

Lakhimpur, which had hogged national news headlines after eight people, including four farmers, were killed in violence on October 3 will go to the polls in the fourth phase. The BJP has been facing the Opposition’s heat for allegedly shielding Ashish Mishra, the son of MoS Home Ajay Mishra Teni, who is the main accused in the case. 

Among the prominent candidates in this phase is Uttar Pradesh Law Minister Brijesh Pathak who is facing Samajwadi party candidate and two-time corporator Surendra Singh Gandhi in the Lucknow Cantonment seat. Pathak had won the Lucknow Central seat in 2017. 

Another minister Ashutosh Tandon is in the fray from the Lucknow East seat and is being challenged by SP’s national spokesperson Anurag Bhadauria.

The Sarojini Nagar Assembly segment will witness a battle between former ED officer Rajeshwar Singh fielded by the BJP and Abhishek Mishra who had been a minister in the Samajwadi Party government. 

Deputy Speaker of Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly Nitin Agarwal, who had crossed over to the BJP from the Samajwadi Party, will face the electoral test in this phase. 

Rae Bareli considered a Congress bastion will also go to the polls in this phase, with BJP’s Aditi Singh in the fray from Rae Bareli. She was earlier with the Congress.  

Campaigning in this phase was marked by PM Modi tearing into the Samajwadi Party during poll rallies in Hardoi and Unnao on Sunday, accusing it of being sympathetic to terrorists. His comments came against the backdrop of a Gujarat court convicting 49 members of the terror outfit Indian Mujahideen for the 2008 Ahmedabad serial blast case and sending 38 of them to the gallows.

Addressing the poll rallies, he wondered why the terrorists had opted for bicycle, the Samajwadi Party’s election symbol, to plant bombs in the initial blasts in Ahmedabad.

Modi also claimed that Akhilesh Yadav was “insecure” about his seat and had to seek help from his father whom he had “humiliated” to capture the party.

Aam Aadmi Party national convener Arvind Kejriwal slammed Modi for his cycle jibe at the Samajwadi Party and termed it an attack on the poor.

Yadav was unrelenting on this attack at the BJP as he claimed there was a 440 volt current against the ruling party in the state and that ‘PM’ stood for Packers and Movers. 

Congress president Sonia Gandhi accused the BJP of meting out “step-motherly” treatment to Raebareli and accused Modi and Adityanath, accusing them of mismanagement during the pandemic.   

As a last-minute effort to drum up support for party candidates, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra held a roadshow in Lucknow on Monday. 

Check the source here –Source, Financial Express.