by IANS |
Amethi (Uttar Pradesh), March 13 (IANS) As the countdown for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections begins, the BJP has started wooing Samajwadi Party leaders in Amethi, from where Union Minister Smriti Irani will be seeking re-election.
Smriti Irani recently visited the residence of Rakesh Pratap Singh, SP MLA from the Gauriganj Assembly seat, to bless his newly wed nephew and daughter-in-law.
Irani is not normally known for striking a rapport with the opposition leaders.
Rakesh has recently been in the news for castigating SP leader Swami Prasad Maurya for his remarks on Ramcharitmanas saying that certain verses of the epic poem written by Tulsidas were derogatory towards certain sections of the society, including women and socially oppressed classes.
What makes Smriti Irani's visit all the more significant is the fact that a week ago, SP president Akhilesh Yadav had visited Rakesh Pratap Singh's residence. He had clearly hinted that his party would field a candidate from Amethi -- a constituency that SP had left for the Gandhi family and the Congress in the past.
Amethi is also buzzing with reports that Rakesh Pratap Singh could be the likely SP candidate from Amethi against Smriti Irani.
Earlier in January, SP's Amethi MLA Maharaji Prajapati, the wife of jailed former mining minister Gayatri Prajapati, was seen at a 'Khichdi Bhoj' hosted by Smriti Irani at her residence in Amethi.
BJP spokesperson in Amethi had maintained that Irani invited Maharaji Prajapati and visited Rakesh Pratap Singh's residence since she was the MP from the constituency and both of them are also MLAs from the same constituency.
"It was a courtesy visit," he emphasized.
Political analysts, however, that there was a definite amount of politics in the courtesy.