BJP muddles BSP hope of smooth Rajya Sabha win

Actor-politician and Rajya Sabha MP Jaya Bachchan on Tuesday refused to comment on the remarks against her by BJP leader Naresh Agrawal.

In his initiation ceremony at the BJP headquarters in Delhi on Monday, Naresh Agrawal said he was humiliated by the SP as he lost the Rajya Sabha election ticket to Jaya Bachchan.

"So far Jaya Bachchan is concerned, she was consistently loyal to the Samajwadi Party and to the party's system".

Irani, who also appeared to be critical of Agrawal's remarks, said when a woman's honour is challenged, "we stand as one in our condemnation irrespective of our politics".

The ruling BJP has made a decision to contest one more than the eight Rajya Sabha seats it is certain to win in Uttar Pradesh when polling is held on March 23.

Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Raj Babbar added that the BJP must think whether it should welcome such a person to join its party.

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Already having 28 spare votes, BJP is pinning hopes on four Independent MLAs and the black sheep in opposition for winning another seat which would increase the treasury bench strength in Rajya Sabha where it still does not have a majority.

The comment drew criticism from the most prominent woman face of the BJP, Union minister Sushma Swaraj, who said it was "unacceptable".

Agarwal's decline within the SP started after he organised a party at a Delhi five-star hotel in July a year ago. "It sends a wrong message to the young generation", she said.

Political leader Naresh Agarwal was denied a ticket inside Samajwadi Party yesterday as a result of which he joined the BJP force. "As far as the SP is concerned, they have said they want to give women importance and that women must be represented properly and that is why our president and leaders have selected me".

Notably, five Rajya Sabha seats from Madhya Pradesh are going to fall vacant as tenure of Rajya Sabha members including Thawarchand Gehlot, Satyavrath Chaturvedi, L Ganeshan, Prakash Javadekar and Meghraj Jain is ending on April 2.

  • Sonia Alvarado