As the election season is halfway through in the crucial Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls battle, it is still almost impossible to guess at state’s voting preferences. As the polls have drove into its third-phase with a 61.16 per cent voter around, fate of 826 candidates from over 100 political parties are in the fray. The 12 districts that went for polling on February 19 included Farrukhabad, Kanpur city, Unnao, Lucknow, Etawah, Hardoi, Kannauj, Barabanki, Auraiyya, Sitapur, Mainpuri and Kanpur rural. The state has witnessed months long high-decibel campaigns and roadshows by leading political parties running in fray to gain majority in the state. Though there is no Modi wave like it was during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, but the saffron party surely has grip across some casts and communities. The elections are considered to be crucial for the ruling Samajwadi Party and the party president and UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has put high stakes to retain the government here. The last minute alliance with the Congress party surely indicates that SP is leaving no stones unturned hold on. The incumbent CM has emerged as a leader of the youth on its own, but there has been a little anger against him because of the law-and-order failure in the state. Though BJP has not announced its chief ministerial candidate yet, but the saffron party is confident about forming government with full majority. BJP has also blamed SP of acting as a roadblock to the development of the state for years.
Making it a high-octane three way battle, Mayawati-led BSP has emerged as a strong contender. Though she has been struggling to increase her vote bank apart from some particular communities. Even the Muslim votes have gone to her in limited areas where the candidates fielded are very strong. With such high voter turnout in all the three phases of the polls so far, it clearly indicates that the electorate is turning out to vote to effect a major change.
Varanasi Cantonment is constituency No. 390 of Uttar Pradesh legislative assembly. It belongs to Varanasi district in Purvanchal region of the state. It comes under the Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency. It is an open constituency.
Number of voters
As per the Election Commission of India, Varanasi Cantt has 3,49,472 registered electorates out of which 1,94,781 are male and 1,54,674 are female registered voters. The constituency has 17 voters in the Others category.
Who was the winner last time
The BJP won this constituency by a margin of 12,852 votes in the 2012 Assembly elections. Jyotsana Srivastava from BJP bagged 57918 votes followed by Anil Srivastava of the Congress who got 45,066 votes. The voter turnout was 51.73 per cent.
What are the key issues
Development and law-and-order and women security are some key issues here.
You might also want to see this:
Who are the competing candidates
Anil Srivastava (Congress), Rijwan Ahmad (BSP), Ribu Srivastava (SP) and Saurabh Srivastava (BJP).
Why this constituency is important?
Unsatisfied over failure of promises made by the political leaders, the mood of Varanasi cantonment constituency seems different in term of their political orientation. On one hand where the entire UP has been divided with the likes of BJP, SP and BSP at large, Varanasi Cantt seers to support Independent candidates. However, PM Modi has promised to improve law-and-order and women safety measures if voted to power, several independent candidates have created buzz by claiming to serve the people.