UP Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya will contest the elections

UP Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya will contest from Sirathu seat from Prayagraj.

New Delhi: Releasing the first list of 107 candidates for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, BJP has fielded Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath from Gorakhpur urban seat and his deputy Keshav Prasad Maurya from Sirathu in Prayagraj as it expressed confidence of retaining power with a large majority. Did.

Barring Yogi Adityanath and Mr Maurya, all names are for 105 of the 113 seats that will go to polls in the first two phases on February 10 and 14, of which 44 are from other backward classes and 19 from scheduled castes, accounting for the total. for 60 percent.

Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan told reporters that there are 63 sitting MLAs in the list, including ministers like Suresh Khanna, Suresh Rana and Shrikant Sharma, while 20 have made space for others.

Former Uttarakhand governor and now BJP vice-president Baby Rani Maurya, a Dalit, has been fielded from Agra (Rural). Defense Minister Rajnath Singh’s son Pankaj Singh will again contest from Noida seat.

While there was speculation that Adityanath might be fielded from Ayodhya, Pradhan said the party decided to field him from Gorakhpur, his traditional political ground, which he has represented in the Lok Sabha for five consecutive terms.

When asked about the issue, Pradhan said the chief minister was ready to contest from any of the 403 seats in the state.

Adityanath will contest the assembly elections for the first time.

Sources said the farming community, which was at the forefront of the agitation against three controversial agricultural laws in western Uttar Pradesh, got 16 seats as the Jat-dominated region went to polls in the first two phases.

Of the 43 seats the BJP has fielded members from the general caste, 18 are Thakurs, 10 Brahmins and eight Vaishyas.

Of the 19 SC candidates in the BJP’s first list, 13 are Jatavs, who make up more than half of the total Dalit population.

The move is seen as a major push by the party to garner the support of a section of the community that has been the traditional cornerstone of the Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party.

Some of the seats that will go to polls in the first two phases and for which the BJP did not name its candidates on Saturday, will go to allies.

Highlighting BJP’s reach to marginalized communities, Pradhan said the party has fielded a Dalit candidate from a general category seat and the list coming up for the Uttar Pradesh elections will have more of them named from the unreserved seats. .

Pradhan said that the BJP fought the 2017 assembly elections to fight corruption and restore law and order in the state and the Yogi Adityanath government has done so, Pradhan, who was associated with BJP general secretary Arun Singh, said.

Claiming that the state is now riot-free, he said several development works, including setting up of colleges and highways, have been done under the guidance of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

He said that Uttar Pradesh now ranks high in the list of beneficiaries of Modi government’s housing scheme, free LPG cylinder program and Ayushman Bharat.

BJP President JP Nadda said that every BJP worker has worked round the clock for the people and the party is committed for the progress of every section of the society in the state.

“I am sure that every BJP candidate will win with an overwhelming majority with the blessings and support of the people,” he said.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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