Today News Online Service
New Delhi, April 11
The BJP on Sunday withdrew the candidature of former MLA and Unnao rape convict Kuldeep Singh Sengar’s wife from the Uttar Pradesh panchayat polls.
The party had made Sangeeta Sengar a candidate for the district panchayat member from ward number 22 of Fatehpur Chaurasi, according to a list released by it earlier.
Voting in 4 phases
April 15, 19, 26 & 29: polling for gram panchayats, kshetra panchayats and zila panchayats
May 2: results will be announced
With the ongoing farmers’ agitation, especially in the Jat-dominated regions of western UP, the elections will be a test for the Yogi Adityanath government. State party president Swatantra Dev Singh said the Unnao district president had been asked to submit three new names. “The candidature of Sangeeta Sengar has been cancelled,” he was quoted as saying.
Coming just a few months ahead of the Assembly elections next year, the panchayat elections are being closely monitored by all political stakeholders in the country’s most populous state. Apart from electing panchayat representatives, the exercise will also provide the BJP’s rivals an opportunity to gauge the mood of the electorate ahead of the elections to the 403-member Uttar Pradesh Assembly due around February-March next year.
Western UP regions, especially those in the proximity of Haryana and the Capital, have been among the hot spots of ongoing farmers’ agitation against the three farm laws. Along with a permanent protest site led by BKU’s Rakesh Tikait at Ghazipur, the region has witnessed a series of ‘mahapanchayats’ supported by a majority of parties, including the SP, RLD and the Congress. The support to the agitation and the ‘mahapanchayats’ has come from rural communities, including Muslims. Political observer Sudhir Panwar said the elections would reflect the mood of the people before the Assembly polls.