Uttar Pradesh Poll Diary: Blood thinner than politics and posts

Friendly fights could be overshadowed by family fights in the next phases as son takes on mother, brother takes on brother in hotly contested Uttar Pradesh assembly seats

PTI Photo
PTI Photo

Biswajeet Banerjee

Mother pitted against son

Handia constituency in Allahabad is witnessing a messy contest between mother and son. Former state cabinet minister Rakesh Dhar Tripathi’s wife Pramila Tripathi is the Apna Dal (S) candidate from Handia while her son Dr Prabhat Tripathi is contesting the election as an independent.

Pramila is in the fray because her husband was denied a BJP ticket due to an ongoing CBI probe in a disproportionate assets case against him. BJP, however, managed ticket for his wife through its ally partner Apna Dal (S). Dr Tripathi, who is a dental surgeon, blames his father for jeopardising his political career. The mother and son return to the same house at night. “We try to have one meal together. But when we meet we do not discuss politics.”

Two brothers in two boats

Senior BSP leader Naseemuddin Siddiqui’s brother Hasnuddin joined the Samajwadi Party a few months back and has been entrusted the job of mobilising Muslim votes in favour of the alliance in Bundelkhand. Shivpal Yadav had named him as the SP candidate from Banda but after the alliance between SP-Congress, the seat eventually went to the sitting MLA, Congress’ Vivek Singh. Which of the brothers will succeed in their mission is being closely watched.

Supporting the son

Samajwadi Party has expelled its Mahila Sabha national president Ranjana Bajpai from the party for anti-party activities. Ranjana’s son Harshvardhan Bajpai is contesting the election as a BJP candidate from Allahabad North. “She held meetings in favour of her son and BJP candidate. The party cannot tolerate such indiscipline,” said the SP in a statement. Anugrah Narain Singh, the sitting Congress legislator, is contesting once again as the alliance candidate.

Dead man in fray in Kashi

Declared dead in 2003 by family members over a property dispute, Santosh Murat Singh “Jinda”, 36, is struggling since then to prove to the world that he is still alive. From staging a dharna at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi to contesting elections—he is doing everything to draw the administration’s attention to the fact that he is actually alive.

Singh is contesting from Shivpur assembly constituency in Varanasi district as an independent candidate. “I am contesting this election to prove that I am alive. There are around 50,000 people across UP who have been declared dead by fraudulent means. If I win, I will work for these living dead,” he says.

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