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Why the Lucknow battle may not be a cake-walk for Rajnath Singh

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Lucknow, Mar 25: Lucknow has been a BJP bastion since 1991. The constituency of former Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the seat is currently held by Union Home Minister, Rajnath Singh.

The Congress however decided to give the BJP a tough fight in Lucknow and is likely to field Jitin Prasada instead of Dhaurahra. The move was initiated since Prasada is a Brahmin from a prominent political family.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. PTI file photo

Prasada won his first election from Shahjahanpur in 2004. In the 2009 polls, he was shifted to Dhaurahra, which he won. However in 2014, he lost the polls to the BJP. While the Congress declared that Prasada would contest from Dhaurahra, there are reports that suggest that he may be moved to Lucknow.

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This is being done keeping the larger caste equations in mind. The party feels that it may gain if it fields a Brahmin from Lucknow. The Congress also feels that this would send a message that the party is trying to promote the Brahmin leadership in the state.

In Dhaurahra, 26 per cent of the voters are Dalits, while the Jatavs and Chamrs comprise 11 per cent of the electorate. The non-jatav votes amount to 15 per cent, while the OBCs make up for 22 per cent. The Muslims and Brahmins are 13 and 12 per cent respectively.

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Taking these factors into mind, the constituency does not seem to be feasible for Prasada. His 2009 win was largely attributed to the Congress wave and the party feels that this factor may not play out this time around.

Further it is also felt that fielding a Brahmin from Lucknow would attract the upper caste votes. Further his candidature would make a difference in urban Lucknow as well, the Congress feels.

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