SP releases candidates list; CM Akhilesh ‘unaware’ of decision
Moments after SP UP chief Shivpal Yadav announced candidates for nine Assembly seats besides changing the candidates of 14 constituencies on Monday, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said he was “not aware” of the decision, while adding that candidates may be changed in future.
“I do not have any information..I am at present inaugurating this building..On Tuesday I will start metro work in Kanpur. In future, more candidates will be changed,” he said at the sidelines of an event.
On being asked about giving party ticket to Aman Mani Tripathi, son of a murder accused, and refusing the ticket to Atul Pradhan, who is considered close to him from Sardhan (Meerut), Akhilesh said, “I have given up all my rights..All the rights are with people”.
On being quizzed further over the issue, he said, “Now I can either be truthful or political. I cannot change some of my habits.”
Earlier in the day, the ruling Samajwadi Party declared the candidates for nine Assembly seats besides changing the candidates of 14 constituencies ahead of the 2017 UP polls.
While Congress ‘turncoat’ Mukesh Srivastava has been given ticket from Prayagpur seat of Bahraich, Aman Mani Tripathi, son of Amar Mani Tripathi, who is in jail in connection with poetess Madhumita murder case, has been given ticket from Nautanwa seat in Mahrajganj district, the SP state president said.
Subhash Rai from Jalalpur (Amebedkar Nagar), Mohd Irshad from Nakud (Saharanpur), Sanjay Yadav from Obra (Sonebhadra), Usha Verma from Sandi (Hardoi) are the others who were given SP tickets, he said.
Besides them, the party state president also changed the candidates of 14 constituencies including that of Sardhana seat in Meerut, where Pintu Rana has been given the ticket instead of Akhilesh’s close aide Atul Pradhan.
Pradhan, former state president of SP Chhatra Sabha is considered close to Akhilesh. He had fought the 2012 polls against BJP Sangeet Som and ended up at the third place.
The others who got the party tickets included Pakshalika Singh, who has replaced Vinod Kumar Sikarwar from Khairagarh seat, and Chandra Bhushan Singh Bundela alias Guddu Raja who replaced Jyoti Lodhi from Lalitpur.
Later on Monday, a meeting was held at SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav’s residence in which Ramgopal Yadav, Shivpal Yadav and Akhilesh were present.
“There are no differences in the party over ticket distribution,” Ramgopal said.
When asked about giving ticket to Aman Mani, Ramgopal said he was given a ticket in 2012 also.
On being asked about Akhilesh’s ignorance about the latest round of ticket distribution, Ramgopal added, “It was the work of state president and there is nothing wrong in it.”
Oppn left with no issue for polls: Akhilesh
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Monday said the opposition was left with no issue for the state Assembly polls even as “some forces” are trying to divert people’s attention to issues other than those of development.
Replying to questions, Yadav said, “The opposition is left with no issue. They do not want to talk about development. If one asks the BJP what it has done for Lucknow or Kanpur during its rule, they will be left answerless.”
“We are working on the agenda of development, but the BJP wants to divert attention on other issues,” he added.
The chief minister was talking to reporters after the inauguration of the new annexe building “Lok Bhavan” in the state capital. “I hope decisions on people’s interest will be taken in this building and samajwadis will continue to sit here,” he said, as he congratulated the officers for the construction of the annexe in record time.