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Wednesday, July 06, 2022

SP picks RLD chief Jayant Chaudhary for Rajya Sabha polls

Eleven seats from UP are headed for Rajya Sabha elections on June 10, with the fight being between the ruling BJP and the SP. Sibal’s Rajya Sabha term was to end on July 4.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: May 26, 2022 12:33:16 pm
Jayant Chaudhary to contest Rajya Sabha polls as SP-RLD joint candidate. (Express File Photo)

The Samajwadi Party (SP) on Thursday announced Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) president Jayant Chaudhary as its third candidate for the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections. This comes a day after the SP announced that it will back former Congress leader Kapil Sibal, who filed as an Independent candidate, and former Rajya Sabha member Javed Ali Khan, who filed as an SP candidate on Wednesday.

In a tweet, the Samajwadi Party official Twitter handle said, “Mr Jayant Chaudhary will be joint candidate of the SP and RLD for the Rajya Sabha.”

On Wednesday, there was speculation in Lucknow that the SP may nominate former MP and Akhilesh’s wife Dimple Yadav for the Upper House. But the speculation was laid to rest after SP announced Jayant as their joint candidate.

Eleven seats from UP are headed for Rajya Sabha elections on June 10, with the fight being between the ruling BJP and the SP. Sibal’s Rajya Sabha term was to end on July 4.

A senior SP leader said that there were discussions on whether the RLD chief will contest on SP or RLD ticket. “But Jayant couldn’t contest on SP ticket because he is the national president of a party which has done well in western UP in the recent elections. Jayant has also been very solid in the SP-led alliance,” said the leader.

In the recent elections, the RLD had fielded candidates in an alliance with SP on 33 seats, and had managed to win eight. The RLD has a sizeable influence among the Jat community in western UP.

At least two allies of the SP have already shown signs of a rift, with Om Prakash Rajbhar of the SBSP asking Akhilesh to get out more, and PSP(L) chief and Akhilesh’s uncle Shivpal Yadav saying that Akhilesh “didn’t show him respect and he has had enough”. Meanwhile, Jayant has been solid within the alliance and has not made any untoward remarks.

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When the farmers’ protests began at the Delhi border, Jayant had raised the issue aggressively in western UP. Massive rallies and mahapanchayats were organised in support of the farmers, primarily Jats, in which he attacked the government on the issues of farm laws and sugarcane dues.

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