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Uttar Pradesh chief minister Adityanath to contest legislative council by-polls

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Adityanath's victory appears to be a foregone conclusion. Photograph: (Zee News Network)

WION Web Team New Delhi, Lucknow Aug 30, 2017, 05.20 PM (IST)

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and his two deputies, Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma, will contest the upcoming state Legislative Council bypolls, the BJP announced today.

Adityanath, Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma and  two ministers - Swatantra Dev Singh and Mohsin Raza are likely to file their nominations close to the last date, BJP sources said.

The Uttar Pradesh chief minister and his ministers need to get elected to either one of the Houses - the Legislative Assembly or the Legislative Council - within six months of assuming office to continue in their posts. Their six month deadline expires on September 19.

The victory of all five BJP nominees is a foregone conclusion given the party's overwhelming majority in the 403-member assembly.

SP chief Akhilesh Yadav said the fact that the BJP leaders chose take the Council route and were not contesting direct elections to enter the state legislature showed the party did not have strength.

He also claimed that the BJP had taken Samajwadi Party Members of Legislative Council (MLCs) in its fold for entering the Upper House.

A number of MLCs from opposition parties in the state, who resigned recently, have given statements in favour of the Adityanath government.

The last date for filing nominations for four seats is September 5. The last date for the withdrawal of candidature is September 8.

Adityanath and Maurya are Lok Sabha members and are likely to resign once they win the Council by-polls.

Polling will be held on September 15 and counting of votes will be done the same day.

The filing of nominations began yesterday. No nomination papers was filed today.

The Election Commission will issue a notification on August 31 for the bypoll to the fifth seat.

The four seats for which bypolls will be held on September 15 were vacated by MLCs Bukkal Nawab, Yashwant, Sarojini Agarwal and Ashok Bajpai - all from the SP.

Another seat fell vacant when Thakur Jaiveer Singh, a former BSP MLC resigned from the party and joined the BJP.

Once elected to the Upper House, Adityanath will become the third successive chief minister, after Akhilesh Yadav (SP) and Mayawati (BSP), to opt for the Legislative Council.

Other UP chief ministers who had opted for the Council route were Narain Dutt Tiwari and late Ram Prakash Gupta (BJP).

Former chief minister Vishwanath Pratap Singh had become a member of UP Legislative Council in November 1980 after assuming the chief minister's office in June 1980. He later contested a by-election from the Tindwari assembly seat and became a member of UP Legislative Assembly in 1981. 

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