New Delhi, February 12: The Samajwadi Party and Congress might give the ticket for March 11 bypoll to Phulpur Lok Sabha seat of Uttar Pradesh to the mother of a Union Minister against the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Krishna Patel is Minister of State for Health Anupriya Patel’s estranged mother and the wife of late Sone Lal Patel, an OBC leader who founded the Apna Dal in 1995. Krishna and Anupriya have parted way and lead different factions of the party, the Hindustan Times reported.
In 2009 Lok Sabha elections, Sone Lal stood third from Phulpur seat by winning just 76,669 votes. In 2017 state Assembly, Krishna unsuccessfully contested from Rohaniya in Varanasi, a seat Anupriya won in the 2012 election. “The Samajwadi Party (SP) wants Krishna Patel to contest on its symbol (cycle),” a leader privy to the discussion said. Krishna, however, is insisting on contesting as an Apna Dal candidate, supported by SP and the Congress.
The SP is not ready for the proposal, a leader close to former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav said. Negotiation were still on between the two sides. Senior leaders of Apna Dal have confirmed that both Congress and SP had contacted Krishna to contest the Phulpur bypoll. A final decision in this regard was expected within the next few days.
Krishna, however, denied these reports. “No political party has contacted me yet in this regard. I will be able to comment on this later,” she said.
The poll was necessitated following the resignation of Keshav Prasad Maurya, who became the deputy chief minister of Uttar Pradesh in 2017. February 20 is the last date to file nominations for the by-election.
Phulpur is SP’s stronghold but which it lost to the BJP in 2014. Maurya defeated SP’s candidate by a margin of over three lakhs in the 2014 general election.
Kurmis — an OBC community — are the single-largest constituents of Phulpur and constitute over four lakh out of a total of more than 19 lakh voters. The bypoll is a prestige battle for the BJP after a splendid show in 2017 Assembly election.