UP: Polling begins for 10 seats of RS

Lucknow, Feb 27 (UNI) Polling for 10 seats of Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh began on Tuesday.

The polling which began at 9 am will continue till 4 pm.

The polling is being held in the Tilak Hall of the new building inside the Vidhan Bhawan. Around 399 MLAs in the house of 403 are eligible to cast their votes in the biennial election for the Rajya Sabha.

The polling has been necessitated as 11 candidates, including 8 of ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and 3 of Samajwadi Party (SP) are in fray for the 10 seats.

It may be noted that BJP has fielded national spokesperson Sudhanshu Trivedi, former Union Minister RPN Singh, Sangeeta Balwant, Sadhna Singh, Amarpal Maurya, Tejveer Singh, Naveen Jain and Sanjay Seth. The main opposition party SP has fielded sitting Rajya Sabha MP Jaya Bachchan, former IAS officer Alok Ranjan and ex-minister Ramji Lal Suman.

Going by the numbers in the UP Legislative Assembly it would not be an easy task for the SP to get all the three candidates elected.

In the house of 403, SP has 108 members and to ensure victory of one candidate the party needs votes of at least 37 members. Besides, two of its members are currently lodged in jail.

After Jayanat Chaudhary led Rashtriya Lok Dal’s (RLD), which has 9 members in the Assembly, drifted towards the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), SP is set to fall short of votes to ensure victory of its third candidate.

Even if Congress, which has two members in the house, votes in favour of SP candidates, it will still be short of votes.

With 252 MLAs of its own and support of the members of its allies, including RLD, BJP is also short of 10 votes. The ruling party enjoys support of allies Apna Dal (Sonelal) having 11 MLAs, Nishad Party and Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party (SBSP) having 6 members each.

Even if two MLAs of Raghuraj Pratap Singh ‘Raja Bhaiya’ support BJP candidate support BJP candidates the party will be needing 8 extra votes. In the house of 403 members 4 seats are vacant due to the demise of the sitting MLAs.

In a major development, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), which has only one member, has decided to support BJP. Earlier, there were reports of SP MLAs skipping the dinner hosted by the party on Monday night, but it was refuted by the party leaders.

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