BJP on Wednesday released its 16th list of candidates for the ensuing Lok Sabha polls, pitting Bhojpuri actor and singer Dinesh Lal Yadav, popularly known as "Nirahua" against Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav in Azamgarh. He joined the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) a week earlier in the presence of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in Lucknow.
Taking to Twitter, he posted a Thank you note for the saffron party for fielding him from Azamgarh seat. He wrote, "Today I was selected to contest from Azamgarh Lok Sabha seat by the BJP party, and I got the chance to serve the sector and the country."
Currently, Mulayam Singh Yadav is the sitting MP from Azamgarh seat.
Besides Nirahau, BJP fielded Manoj Kotak to contest from Mumbai North East, dropping sitting MP Kirit Somaiya from the contest of the Lok Sabha elections. To take on SP patriarch Mulayam Singh in Mainpuri Lok Sabha seat, BJP has fielded Prem Singh Shakhya.
Furthermore, Dinesh Pratap Singh, a local strongman who had left the Congress to join it last year, is all set to fight against UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi from Rae Bareli. The seat has long been a bastion of the Gandhi family with former Congress president Sonia Gandhi being a three-time sitting MP from the seat.
Earlier in March, BJP released its star campaigner list for the state of Uttar Pradesh. The list includes Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Aditya Nath, MEA Sushma Swaraj, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley among other top BJP leaders.
Lok Sabha elections are scheduled to kickstart from April 11, with Uttar Pradesh going to polls in all seven phases. The results will be announced on May 23.