1. Uttar Pradesh assembly elections: Another Samajwadi Party leader, Raja Mahendra Aridaman Singh, joins BJP

Uttar Pradesh assembly elections: Another Samajwadi Party leader, Raja Mahendra Aridaman Singh, joins BJP

As the feud within the Samajwadi Party (SP) continues, with the dates for the crucial Uttar Pradesh assembly elections nearing, SP leader Raja Mahendra Aridaman Singh has, today, joined the Bharatiya Janat Party (BJP).

By: | New Delhi | Published: January 14, 2017 4:31 PM
SP leader Raja Mahendra Aridaman Singh has, today, joined the Bharatiya Janat Party (BJP). (ANI) SP leader Raja Mahendra Aridaman Singh has, today, joined the Bharatiya Janat Party (BJP). (ANI)

As the feud within the Samajwadi Party (SP) continues, with the dates for the crucial Uttar Pradesh assembly elections nearing, SP leader Raja Mahendra Aridaman Singh has, today, joined the Bharatiya Janat Party (BJP). Earlier, on January 13, in another setback for the ruling party in UP, former Union Minister under the Atal Bihari Bajpayee rule, Ashok Pradhan, also left the Samajwadi Party to join BJP.

Pradhan, who won on BJP ticket from Khurja constituency four times, had left the party to join Samajwadi Party ahead of Lok Sabha polls in 2014 and his reinduction is likely to boost the saffron prospects in parts of western Uttar Pradesh. He termed his return to BJP as ‘ghar wapsi’ and alleged that SP and BSP have looted the state and only BJP is capable of developing it as he expressed confidence in Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party chief Amit Shah’s leadership. Pradhan joined the BJP in presence of his supporters and party’s national general secretary Arun Singh and Bhupendra Yadav.

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And with political heat intensifying, ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, possibility of a Congress- Samajwadi Party alliance in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh brightened today with the AICC declining to rule out such a tie up in the “highly evolving and rapidly transforming” scenario.

“We are neither agreeing, nor disagreeing with any of your speculation in the highly evolving, rapidly transforming minute-to-minute (scenario)…,” Congress spokesman Abhsihek Singhvi told reporters.

He preceded the remark by saying that the Congress was “ready and rearing” to fight all the 403 Assembly seats of the politically key state. He said the party has made huge preparations for contesting all the seats. He was asked whether the Congress is going in for an alliance with Samajwadi Party which has Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav as the leader.

Two days back, party Vice President Rahul Gandhi had kept people guessing on the alliance question, remarking that the election in the politically crucial state will be an “exciting affair”.

“Uttar Pradesh mein maja aayega (it will be an exciting affair),” he had said while delivering valedictory address of Congress’ ‘Jan Vedna’ meeting against note ban here.

The remarks of the Congress spokesman came on a day the Election Commission reserved its order in Samajwadi Party election symbol dispute case.

(With inputs from agencies)

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