As the polling for phase 2 of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections is underway in 67 constituencies today, parties such as Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Congress, Samajwadi Party (SP) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) etc. are affirmative about sweeping the second round. Spread over 11 districts of western UP in the round 2, polling is taking place amid tight security arrangements in places like Saharanpur, Bijnor, Moradabad, Sambhal, Rampur, Bareilly, Amroha, Pilibhit, Kheri, Shahjahanpur and Badaun. While the ongoing polls are considered to be a mid-term test for Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led BJP government and its three years long regime, stakes are higher for Akhilesh Yadav-led SP as it holds 34 seats here. Amidst months of high-decibel campaigns by the leading parties, the state saw ‘blame-game’ at its level best with all these political figures blaming their counterparts for the roads not taken for development. The incumbent CM Akhilesh Yadav had even mentioned that downfall of those who had ‘befooled’ the people promising ‘achche din’ has started, which was surely a jibe at PM Modi and the BJP. SP is largely banking upon development agenda with CM’s ‘Kaam Bolta Hai’ campaign, but PM Modi had been critical about Akhilesh and blamed him for the law and order failure in the state.
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BSP chief Mayawati too had wooed the voters in her back to back rallies across the state. She had also blamed the BJP and SP on the issues of development and demonetisation. Further strengthening her ante against PM Modi, Mayawati has accused the BJP government of interfering with the personal law of Muslims and ending reservation for backward communities.
Kanpur Cantonment is constituency No. 216 of Uttar Pradesh legislative assembly. It is situated in Kanpur district and comes under the Kanpur Urban Lok Sabha constituency. It is an open constituency.
Number of voters
As per the Election Commission data, Kanpur Cantonment has 2,97,863 registered voters. It comprises 1,66,572 male and 1,31,279 female voters. The constituency also comprise 12 registered voters in the Others category.
What are the key issues
Development and employment are two key issues here. Even the increasing lawlessness is a big concern for the citizens in this constituency. People of this region are also disturbed from the demonetisation drive announced by the centre and believe that poor had to face much inconvenience due to the decision.
Who was the winner last time
During the 2012 Assembly elections, BJP won this constituency by 9,308 votes. Raghunandan Singh Bhadauria, the winning BJP candidate, got 42,551 votes, who was followed by Mohd. Hasan Roomi of Samajwadi Party with 33,243 votes. The voter turnout was a lowly 48.46 per cent.
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Who are the competing candidates
Naseem Ahmad (BSP), Raghunandan Singh Bhadauria (BJP), Sohil Akhtar Ansari (Congress), Mohd. Hassan Roomi (SP) and Dharmendra Singh (RLD)
Why this constituency is important?
Though Kanpur Cantt is a Muslim majority constituency, but no candidate from the community has ever won from the seat. Although, both BSP and SP has fielded Muslim candidates here, but BJP is still relying on Bhadoria who won the seat in 2012 for the second time.