LUCKNOW: Even as polling for the fourth phase in Uttar Pradesh is underway, Samajwadi Party candidate from Lucknow central Ravidas Mehrotra claimed he will bag the prestigious seat. According to him, it was sensing their defeat that BJP decided to field Brajesh Pathak, law minister in the current government, from another seat.
After casting his vote at the Nari Shakti Niketan polling booth in Lucknow, Mehrotra told The New Indian, “I am hopeful of winning this seat as people are backing for change. I have the support of people as we have been constantly seeking development.”
He claimed that his fight for the people and raising their issues has attracted government ire and led to his being sent to jail for over 251 times.
“The BJP changed its candidate from Lucknow central sensing defeat. Brajesh Pathak, the law Minister of UP and sitting MLA has been shifted to Lucknow cantt from Lucknow central because he has not done any work,” said Mehrotra, who is also a two time MLA.
Lamenting at the state government apathy, the Samajwadi Party leader said that the Lucknow central which houses the BJP state headquarters and CM residence and office did not see any development and this is the reason why Pathak has been fielded from another seat.
Mehrotra said that the assembly has not seen any development in last five years and it was during his tenure that the assembly constituency witnessed works of development.
When asked about whom he sees as the main challenger in the assembly polls, he said, “The Congress and the BSP are not real challengers and it is a direct fight between BJP and the Samajwadi Party. People were deprived of development and they were waiting for their chance to cast their vote and change the government thus on March 10, Akhilesh Yadav will be sworn in as the Chief Minister.”
To another question of BJP accusing the Samajwadi Party leader of promoting terrorism, he said, “BJP is lying. Their own leaders, MPs and cabinet ministers are accused in number of cases. One of its MP has been accused of rape and was arrested. Then a vehicle of Minister in the Union government was used for mowing down farmers in Lakhimpur. Once our government comes to power we will send such people to jail.”
He also said that those voting for BJP would only be extending support to the cheaters.
He also lamented at Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and said, “He withdrew cases against himself including those of serious charges while in office and government. While I have also gone to jail more than 251 times and got arrested for over 400 times, I do not have a case against me.”
The polling for the 59 assembly seat in fourth phase in Uttar Pradesh is underway. The polling for three remaining phases will take place on February 27, March 3 and March 7.Counting of votes will take place on March 10.