A day after delivering the election manifesto, The Samajwadi party, led by Akhilesh Yadav announced its third list of candidates and it seems the CM has taken Mulayam Singh Yadav's advice this time.
A day after delivering the election manifesto, The Samajwadi party, led by Akhilesh Yadav announced its third list of candidates and it seems the CM has taken Mulayam Singh Yadav’s advice this time. The list includes the name of Aparna Yadav, wife of Akhilesh’s younger brother Prateek. Aparna is going to contest the elections from Lucknow Cantt as suggested by Mulayam Singh Yadav against the veteran Rita Bahuguna Joshi. Bahuguna Joshi will be contesting with the Lotus symbol this time after spending 24 long years with the Congress. Bahuguna had won the Lucknow Cantt in the last elections.
It has to be noted that Lucknow Cantt is one constituency, the Samajwadi Party has never won. It was Mulayam, who had suggested Aparna as a viable candidate for the seat almost a year ago and the latter has since worked for the party to build a base in the constituency. But the recent tussle for power between Akhilesh Yadav and Mulayam had put a question mark over her name. It did not help that Aparna was widely seen as a staunch supporter of Shivpal Yadav. Although, it would have been foolish not to nominate Aparna from the constituency after a year of hard grooming and a founding a successful base in the region. Aparna, at one point of time, was also considered by Team Shivpal to replace Akhilesh as the young face of the party and eventually become their CM candidate.
Although even with all the grooming and evidently the backup from both Mulayam and Akhilesh, Aparna will still face a stiff competition from the Bhartiya Janata APrty’s Rita Bahuguna Joshi. Uttar Pradesh politics runs in Joshi’s veins as it does in Akhilesh and company. She is the daughter of former UP chief Minister Hn Bahuguna Joshi and had been serving as the state President of the Congress Party, which she quit in October last year after 24 long years. Rita had won the Lucknow Cantt during the last elections in 2012. She had also resigned from the post of the Congress President in 2012 taking responsibility for the grand old party’s poor performance which saw Akhilesh Yadav become the Chief Minister. Although Rita Bahuguna Joshi had won the Lucknow Cantt by over 20,000 votes.
Although Congress and SP have formed an alliance to count the might of the Saffron army, it has to be noted that the Congress is a shadow of its former self for all practical purposes and the Samajwadi party has just come out of a major public spat between the Yadav family. However, an alliance does make them look strong on paper as CM Akhilesh Yadav still enjoys a major support in the state. The BJP, on the other hand, is still riding on the Modi wave, which has somewhat slowed down due to the demonetisation policy. However, the drive cannot alone be used as a measure of success as the right wing party has won Municipal elections in various regions riding on the self-declared success of demonetisation. The Lucknow constituency, however, is in for an interesting fight as Aparna Yadav and Rita Bahuguna faces each other.