Notification issued for first phase of UP Assembly polls

Written by: Pti
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Uttar Pradesh map
Lucknow, Jan 12: The election process got underway in Uttar Pradesh on Thursday with notification for the first phase of Assembly polls which will be a litmus test for Union Minister Beni Prasad Verma and National Commission for Scheduled Caste Chairman PL Punia.

In the first phase, 55 constituencies spread over 10 districts - Sitapur, Gonda, Basti, Bahraich, Balrampur Barabanki, Faizabad, Ambedkar Nagar, Siddharth Nagar and Shravasti are going on polls which will be held on February 8th.

The phase will decide the fate of 15 former ministers, three sitting ministers and 31 MLAs.

Gonda Congress MP Beni's prestige would be at stake not only in seven assembly constituencies of his parliamentary area, but also in Barabanki with his son Rakesh Verma contesting from Dariyabad seat there.

Barabanki Congress MP, P L Punia's Dalit card and influence in the area would also be under keen observation in six constituencies of his area

Both Verma, known for his say in Kurmi vote bank and Punia, Dalit face of Congress would have the herculean task of ensuring maximum number of seats for the Congress, which had secured only three of the 55 seats in 2007 assembly polls.

As far as ticket distribution is concered, Verma had ruled the roost and succeeded in ensuring tickets to his loyalists and also turncoats from Samajwadi Party.

Congress leaders are hoping that party General Secretary Rahul Gandhi's visit in the areas going to polls would boost their prospects.

Rahul had covered various constituencies in Bahraich, Gonda, Barabanki, Sitapur, Basti districts during his visits and held a series of public meetings.

Also, Congress leader and MP Jagdambika Pal, whose son Abhishek Pal is contesting from Basti Sadar seat has also been camping in his constituency to ensure victory of his son - a first timer in political battle.

For Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), which had secured maximum of 30 seats out of 55 seats in the 2007 assembly polls it would be a fight to increase its tally.


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