UP votes today for legislative council polls, Yogi Adityanath among early voters
UP MLC Polls: Nine BJP candidates have been elected unopposed after the Election Commission announced the MLC polls for 36 seats last month.
Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath was among the early voters on Saturday as polling began for the legislative council elections. The UP MLC polls are taking place weeks after the BJP retained the state with a huge majority of 273 seats along with its allies following the seven-phased assembly elections. Nine BJP candidates have been elected unopposed after the Election Commission announced the MLC polls for 36 seats last month.
Budaun, Hardoi, Kheri, Mirzapur-Sonbhadra, Banda-Hamirpur, Aligarh, Bulandshahr and Mathura-Etah-Mainpuri are the seats where the candidates have been elected unopposed, according to news agency PTI.
In photos tweeted by news agency ANI, the chief minister - who created a record of sorts as he became the first UP CM to return to power for a second straight term in three decades - was seen casting his vote.
"Voting is to be held in Uttar Pradesh today for the biennial elections to the Legislative Council of Local Authority Constituencies. All the eligible respected voters must vote for the victory of development, nationalism and good governance. Your one vote will give strength to the construction journey of 'Self-reliant Uttar Pradesh', (sic)," the 49-year-old BJP leader tweeted in Hindi hours before voting began.
After voting, Yogi told reporters: "On nine of 36 council seats, BJP candidates were already elected unopposed. We were able to form our government with two-thirds majority under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month. This will be probably the first time that the ruling party will have a majority in the State Legislative Council."
In Agra, 16 centres have been set up for the elections to the legislative council of Agra-Firozabad constituency. Five candidates, including two from BJP and Samajwadi Party, are in the contest, besides three independent candidates.
Ahead of the voting, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav demanded special arrangements, seeking "free and fair" voting. "For the sanctity of democracy and free-fair voting, we hope the Election Commission will discharge its constitutional responsibility. We hope the ruling party will not be allowed to rig tomorrow's voting," he was quoted as saying by PTI on Friday.
(With inputs from ANI, PTI)