Rajnath Singh’s son, Rita Bahuguna Joshi in BJP’s second list for UP polls

New Delhi: BJP on Sunday released its second list of 155 candidates for UP assembly poll with Pankaj Singh, son of Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Sidharth Nath Singh and Rita Bahuguna Joshi prominent among them.

With this, the party has so far announced the names of 304 candidates with no Muslim nominee among them. The election to the 403-member Assembly will take place in seven phases, starting February 11.

Besides Singh, who makes his electoral debut from Noida, party’s national secretary Sidharth Nath Singh, Rita Bahuguna Joshi, who left Congress to join BJP, and Mriganka Singh, daughter of Kairana MP Hukum Singh, are among the party candidates.

BJP has also fielded Garima Singh, first wife of Amethi royal and Congress MP Sanjay Singh, from Amethi, according to the official list released today by its general secretary Arun Singh and Uttar Pradesh unit chief Keshav Prasad Maurya at a press conference.

Announcing the names here, Arun Singh said the list represents all sections of people, adding, “BJP is confident of forming a government in UP with a two-third majority”.

Asked about absence of Muslim nominee in the list, he said there was “no suitable” candidate.

Pankaj Singh, a general secretary in the party’s state unit, has missed out on becoming its nominee in a couple of previous elections. His name was doing the rounds for a number of constituencies with the party finally allotting Noida seat to him.

Brajesh Pathak, who joined the party after deserting BSP, has been given ticket from Lucknow Central.

The seven-phase polls in the state will take place on February 11, 15, 19, 23, 27, March 4 and 8.

The party has been pulling out all stops to capture power in UP, which in terms of political implications is more important than all other four poll-bound states.