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Uttar Pradesh: 98.11% turnout recorded in MLC polls

Among the 27 constituencies, the highest 99.35 per cent polling was recorded in the Raebareli constituency, followed by Pratapgarh (99.25 per cent), Sitapur (99.2 per cent) and Barabanki (99.16 per cent).

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath casting his vote for the MLC elections in gorakhpur on Saturday. (Express/Vishal Srivastav)

An estimated 98.11 per cent of voters exercised their franchise on Saturday to elect members to the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council from 27 local body constituencies spread across 58 districts, according to data shared by the office of the UP chief electoral officer after the voting concluded at 4 pm. The counting of votes will take place on April 12.

Among the 27 constituencies, the highest 99.35 per cent polling was recorded in the Raebareli constituency, followed by Pratapgarh (99.25 per cent), Sitapur (99.2 per cent) and Barabanki (99.16 per cent). The Gorakhpur-Maharajganj constituency, however, recorded the lowest turnout at 96.5 per cent, followed by Etawah-Farrukhabad (96.65 per cent) and Muzaffarnagar-Saharanpur (96.69 per cent). The Election Commission had issued a notification for the election of 36 members to the UP Legislative Council from 35 constituencies. However, as nine members were elected unopposed from eight constituencies even before the polling began, the voting took place for the remaining 27 seats.

There were 95 candidates in the fray whose electoral fate was to be decided by over 1.2 lakh voters who were expected to cast their votes at 739 centres. The voters in this biennial election are village pradhans, members and chairman of block development councils, members and chairman of zila panchayat, corporators in urban areas, and MLAs and MPs.

As the MLA from Gorakhpur Urban seat, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath exercised his franchise in the Gorakhpur-Maharajganj constituency, while Union minister Smriti Irani voted in Amethi, from where she is the Lok Sabha MP.

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The Congress and the BSP have not fielded any candidate in the Legislative Council polls, making it a straight fight between the BJP and the Samajwadi Party, the principal opposition in the UP Assembly. However, some Independents are also in the fray.

Of the 36 BJP candidates, five are former SP leaders, who joined the saffron camp on the eve of the February-March state polls. The SP declared its candidates for 34 seats, leaving the Meerut-Ghaziabad and Bulandshahr seats for its ally Rashtriya Lok Dal.

Prominent among those who have been fielded are Kafeel Khan from Deoria, Mashkoor Ahmad from Rampur-Bareilly, sitting MLCs Sunil Kumar Sajan, Rajesh Kumar and Udayveer Singh from Lucknow-Unnao, Barabanki, and Mathura-Etah-Mainpuri seats, respectively.

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Following a resounding victory in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, the BJP has set its eye on becoming the single-largest party in the state Legislative Council as well by winning a majority of the 36 Upper House seats. In the 100-member Legislative Council, where 37 positions are vacant but the elections took place for 36 seats, the BJP currently has 34 MLCs, the SP 17 and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) four. The Congress, Apna Dal (Sonelal) and Nishad Party have one member each in
the House.

The teachers’ group (non-political) has two MLCs, while the independent group — Nirdal Samooh — and Independents have one MLC each.

(With PTI inputs)

First published on: 09-04-2022 at 12:52 IST
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