Whatever may be the results of the general elections, the Samajwadi Party has overtaken all the parties in the matter of announcing the names of the candidates for the Lok Sabha elections to be held after about two months. By doing this, SP has tried to create a psychological edge over BJP, but it cannot be said yet how successful this move will be. It is possible that by revealing its cards, SP has given BJP a chance to make its strong strategy. At the same time, there is a hidden message for Congress that it should take a decision as soon as possible, otherwise SP will not hesitate to jump into the election field alone. Among the 16 candidates whose names have been announced by Akhilesh Yadav in the first list of Samajwadi Party candidates, the names of three candidates from the Yadav clan – wife Dimple Yadav, cousin Dharmendra Yadav and Akshay Yadav respectively – have emerged, whose tickets have been fixed. . In order to field a winning candidate, SP has also given tickets to some leaders from BSP and Congress. On one hand, this step of Akhilesh is being linked to the internal politics of India Alliance, on the other hand, this announcement is also being said to be an attempt by the BJP to gain a psychological edge over him.
If we look at the list of Samajwadi Party, tickets have also been given to some leaders who had left Congress and joined the party some time ago. Annu Tandon’s name is most prominent among these. Annu Tandon is an old Congressman. She has also been an MP from Unnao. However, currently BJP’s Sakshi Maharaj is the MP from this seat. Annu Tandon was a candidate from Congress in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and stood third. Samajwadi Party was at second position. Now Annu Tandon has got ticket from SP. Similarly, SP has made Rajaram Pal its candidate from Akbarpur Lok Sabha seat. Rajaram was in the fray on Congress ticket in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. He stood third. In that election, this seat had gone to BSP under the SP-BSP alliance. BSP stood second and BJP’s Devendra Singh Bhole won. Similarly, Samajwadi Party has given a shock to Congress and has made Dr. Naval Kishore Shakya its candidate from Farrukhabad. Senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid has been contesting elections from Farrukhabad seat. In 2019, Salman Khurshid stood third. On this seat too, under the alliance, BSP had given ticket to Manoj Aggarwal, who stood second. BJP’s Mukesh Rajput had won from here. Congress has also been emphasizing on Lucknow Lok Sabha seat every time. Last time, Pramod Krishnam was made a candidate from here, but despite a lot of efforts, Congress remained at the third position here. Last time, under the SP-BSP alliance, SP had fielded Poonam Sinha, wife of film actor Shatrughan Sinha, on this seat, but she too stood second. This time, Samajwadi Party has moved ahead and announced Ravidas Mehrotra as its candidate. Now it remains to be seen whether Congress supports them and then takes some other decision.
SP has also given tickets to some old MPs, the most famous name of which is that of Sambhal MP Shafiqur Rahman Burke, who is the oldest MP at present. Burke’s image has been that of a staunch Muslim leader. He was at the forefront in raising questions on the construction of Ramlala temple in Ayodhya and also on the Supreme Court’s decision regarding it. Akhilesh has once again expressed confidence in Modi’s staunch opponent Burke. Dr. Shafiqur Rahman Burke is known as a big Muslim leader in Western Uttar Pradesh. He has been a five-time MP and four-time MLA. Burke reached the House in 2019 by winning the election from Sambhal Lok Sabha seat on SP ticket. Four-time MLA Dr. Burke won the Lok Sabha elections for the first time in 1996 on SP ticket. However, in 2009, he reached the Lok Sabha by winning on Mayawati’s BSP ticket. He first became MLA from Sambhal in 1974 on BKD ticket. Akhilesh is not able to ignore Dr. Burke, who became Lok Sabha MP from Moradabad as a SP candidate in 1996, because of his hold on the politics of Western UP.
Dr. Shafiqur Rahman Burke had definitely lost the election in the year 2014 in the first Modi wave. He had to face defeat at the hands of Bharatiya Janata Party. This was the first time that he had to face defeat from Sambhal seat. In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, BJP’s Satyapal Singh defeated the senior SP leader by 5174 votes. Satyapal Singh got 3,60,242 votes in this election. Whereas, Dr. Burke was able to get 3,55,068 votes. BSP stood third in this election. Dr. Burke got the benefit of SP-BSP alliance in the 2019 elections. In this election, Dr. Burke got 6,58,006 votes and BJP’s Parameshwara Rao Saini got 4,83,180 votes. Even after the Modi-Yogi wave, Dr. Burke had regained his seat by winning by 1,74,826 votes.
If we talk about BJP, it has always been announcing its candidates earlier. A similar thing was seen in the recently held state assembly elections, when BJP had taken a psychological lead by announcing candidates in Chhattisgarh-Madhya Pradesh elections in advance. In UP, Bahujan Samaj Party has a history of being the first to announce its candidates. Many times this situation was seen when the candidates were announced several months before the elections and the tickets were changed twice as the elections approached. But the performance of BSP has been very weak in the last few elections. Its direct effect is also visible in ticket distribution. BSP is not able to get even legitimate candidates. Same is the condition of Congress in Uttar Pradesh. It is claiming to contest elections on two dozen seats, but there is a shortage of strong candidates there too. Overall, SP definitely seems to be on top in distributing tickets, but both flowers and thorns are visible in its electoral path.