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Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Yashpal Arya's resignation is a big setback for BJP in Uttarakhand, know why Congress is celebrating

The move of Uttarakhand Transport Minister Yashpal Arya and his MLA son Sanjeev Arya from BJP to Congress is a major setback for the saffron party. With the assembly elections just a few months away, the BJP has little time to find an alternative to Arya, a veteran of the Scheduled Castes. Arya was expected to help the BJP in its SC outreach. Especially in the Terai region of Kumaon.


Arya's exit has also affected the BJP's psychological advantage over the Congress after the recent induction of a Congress MLA and two independent candidates into the party. Arya himself had joined the BJP from the Congress before the last assembly elections. His quitting the party could adversely affect the BJP in some parts of Udham Singh Nagar district, which has nine assembly seats. Khatima, a seat in the district, is the seat of Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami.

A section of BJP leaders believe that Arya returned to the Congress as his Bajpur seat is the epicenter of the farmers' agitation in the district and that he would have lost as a BJP candidate. However, Arya's resignation may make it difficult for the BJP to rein in other former Congress leaders who joined the BJP in 2017.

Arya enjoys popularity in the neighboring Nainital district as well. His son Sanjeev Arya represents Nainital in the assembly. A BJP worker said, "It may be a difficult task for the BJP to elect a possible candidate against Sanjeev in Nainital. Sanjeev is popular in this constituency."

According to BJP insiders, the party tried to stop Arya from defecting. The party had a sense of his stature as a SC leader. CM Dhami himself had recently visited Arya's residence for a breakfast meeting to persuade him to continue with the BJP. The Congress was also eager to bring Arya back into the party. After his return, there was an atmosphere of celebration in the Congress state headquarters Dehradun on Monday.