The BJP on Monday nominated Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, MP Neeraj Shekhar and six other candidates for the November 9 Rajya Sabha elections from Uttar Pradesh.
While the party repeated the candidatures of Singh, whose term as an Upper House member from the state is expiring next month, and Shekhar, a Thakur face and son of former Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar, the name of former state police chief Brijlal surprised many political observers.
The former police officer is one of the party’s prominent Scheduled Caste (SC) leaders in the state. Brijlal was once considered close to BSP chief Mayawati, who appointed him Director-General of Police. However, after retirement. he joined the saffron party in 2015. He was appointed the chairperson of the Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in Uttar Pradesh in 2018. His term ended last year, and since then he has been projected as the party’s SC face.
Neeraj Shekhar was earlier a RS MP from the Samajwadi Party. He joined the BJP last year after the Lok Sabha elections, and was re-elected to the Upper House.
Two of the candidates are Brahmins. They are senior party leader Haridwar Dubey, and former MLA Seema Dwivedi.
The candidates from the Other Backward Class (OBC) communities are Seema Shakya, who has held different posts in the organisation, and senior leader BL Verma. The other candidate is party General Secretary Arun Singh.
Rajya Sabha elections to 10 seats from Uttar Pradesh and one from Uttrakhand will be held on November 9. In Uttarakhand, the BJP fielded state Cabinet minister Naresh Bansal, who is also the vice-chairperson of the Uttarakhand 20-point programme implementation committee.
The BJP’s eight nominees from Uttar Pradesh are likely to win as the party has three-fourth majority in the state Assembly. Bansal’s victory in Uttarakhand is also expected. If they win, the party’s tally in the 245-member Upper House will cross 90.
Naresh Bansal to be BJP candidate from Uttarakhand
Dehradun: The BJP on Monday announced senior party leader Naresh Bansal as candidate for Rajya Sabha election from the state. A former RSS man, Bansal is known as cadre worker who has been associated with the party from over two decades and held key posts in the state organisation. He had taken voluntary retirement from a bank job to enter active politics. Bansal is currently vice-chairman of the state-level 20-point programme implementation committee and he enjoys a cabinet rank in that capacity. —ENS
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