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VACANT ASSEMBLY SEATS: EC YET TO DECIDE ABOUT BY-POLLS

The Election Commission of India has to take a call about holding by-polls to the eight assembly seats in Uttar Pradesh. A bypoll to a vacant seat in the state assembly is generally held within six months from the date of vacancy. However, EC has not yet given any indication about holding these bypolls. “For seats, where the six-month time period is complete, EC has given a certificate, saying a decision about holding the bypoll there will be taken later,” said an officer.

The Uttar Pradesh assembly has a strength of 403 members. The five members who died include two ministers Kamal Rani Varun, who held the Ghatampur seat in Kanpur Nagar district, and Chetan Chauhan, who represented Amroha’s Naugawan Sadat assembly constituency. While Varun died on August 2 after contracting Covid-19, Chetan Chauhan succumbed to the disease on August 16.

BJP’s Janmejaya Singh, Deoria Sadar MLA, died on August 21 and Veerendra Singh Sirohi, a Bulandshahar MLA, passed away on March 2. Samajwadi Party’s Paras Nath Yadav, who represented Malhani in Jaunpur, died on June 12.

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The other seats declared vacant include the one that had been held by BJP member Kuldeep Singh Sengar, who was disqualified following the life sentence awarded to him in a rape case. His seat of  Bangarmau, Unnao, has been declared vacant with effect from December 20, 2019.

The Swar seat was declared vacant with effect from December 16, 2019 after the Allahabad high court declared the election of Samajwadi Party’s Mohammad Abdullah Azam invalid.

Earlier, the Tundla assembly seat of Firozabad was declared vacant on June 4 following the resignation of former UP minister SP Singh Baghel when he was elected to the Lok Sabha from Agra.

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The Election Commission also will have to take a call about holding the biennial election to 11 seats of the Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Parishad. The term of 11 MLCs from graduate and teachers constituency of the state legislative council ended on May 6. Another seat fell vacant in the council following disqualification of former BSP leader Naseemuddin Siddiqui, who had switched loyalties to the Congress.

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