UP Election 2022: In a first since 2014, BJP fields first Muslim candidate from Suar constituency
The announcement is not official on the seat-sharing arrangement between the BJP and the alliance partner Apna Dal.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ally Apna Dal revealed its first candidate for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls. The candidate named Haider Ali Khan, from Suar in western Uttar Pradesh's Rampur district to contest from the region. Meanwhile, it is anticipated that Abdullah Azam, the son of jailed Samajwadi Party MP Azam Khan, will compete from Suar.
The announcement is not an official word on the seat-sharing arrangement between the BJP and the alliance partner Anupriya Patel's Apna Dal and Sanjay Nishad's Nishad party.
Haider Khan, the candidate for the Suar constituency from an alliance with BJP, is the first and rare instance of the party to field a Muslim candidate for the upcoming UP Assembly election.
Khan belongs to the Rampur Royal family, Zulfiqar Ali Khan, grandfather of Khan, was a five-term Congress MP from Rampur. Haider's father, Nawab Kazim Ali Khan, is a four-time MLA of Congres party from Rampur.
Khan was initially in the Congress party, but after he went to Delhi and met Anupriya Patel; she officially declared him the party's candidate from Suar.
In 2017, Abdullah Azam contested the Assembly election from Suar as a Samajwadi Party candidate and won. In December 2019, the Allahabad High Court nullified his victory in the election as he was below 25 years when he filed his nomination for the 2017 elections. Since February 2020, Abdullah has been in jail on multiple charges, including cheating.
In several cases, Azam Khan, Abdullah's father, the present Lok Sabha MP from Rampur, has been in jail since February 2020. Azam Khan has filed a plea in Supreme Court seeking interim bail to campaign in the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections. He got bail a few days back and is expected to be fielded by the Samajwadi Party from Suar this time.
The plea read the state has adopted all means available to delay the proceedings on his three remaining bail applications to ensure that he remains imprisoned during the state Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, which are scheduled to take place from February 10 to March 7, and is unable to campaign for his party.