Voting underway to elect deputy speaker of UP legislative assembly

The last deputy speaker of the UP legislative assembly was the BJPs Rajesh Agarwal who was elected unopposed in 2004.


PTI | Lucknow | Updated: 18-10-2021 13:12 IST | Created: 18-10-2021 13:10 IST
Voting underway to elect deputy speaker of UP legislative assembly
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Polling for the post of deputy speaker in the Uttar Pradesh legislative assembly was underway on Monday, with BJP-backed SP rebel MLA Nitin Agarwal and the Akhilesh Yadav-led party's official candidate Narendra Verma in the fray.

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), which has 16 MLAs in the House, staged a walkout before the voting process began, while the Congress, with its seven legislators, has decided to boycott the polls.

The Congress has accused the ruling BJP of attempting to divert attention from the various problems plaguing Uttar Pradesh by going in for the election for the post of deputy speaker.

Voting began around 11.45 am and will continue till 3 pm. Results will be formally announced after that.

Agarwal, who was elected as a legislator on a Samajwadi Party (SP) ticket but then cozied up to the ruling BJP, is all set to be the deputy speaker of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly with the support of the saffron party.

A miffed SP, which has fielded Verma as its official candidate for the contest, had on Sunday hit out at the BJP, accusing it of trying to sabotage democracy, and asserted that the post should traditionally go to the opposition party.

Agarwal's victory is just a matter of time given the overwhelming majority the BJP enjoys in the House.

At present, the saffron party has 304 MLAs in the 403-member UP legislative assembly, while the Samajwadi Party has 49. BJP-ally Apna Dal (Sonelal) has nine MLAs.

After the polling, Uttar Pradesh will get its first deputy speaker of the legislative assembly after a gap of over 14 years.

As per tradition, an MLA from the principal opposition party is made the deputy speaker of the assembly. The last deputy speaker of the UP legislative assembly was the BJP's Rajesh Agarwal who was elected unopposed in 2004.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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