As UP polls show, no party is above dynastic politics


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been attacking rival politicians, accusing them of promoting dynastic politics and ignoring the developmental agenda. However, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi has refuted the charge and said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) too is mired in dynastic politics.

Campaigning in Uttar Pradesh, the Prime Minister has been saying that the BJP government is “necessary” for the state and the earlier governments “could not see or think beyond family”. His main attack has been on Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Akhilesh Yadav and his ally Jayant Chaudhary of the Rashtriya Lok Dal along with Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi. While Akhilesh is the second generation in politics, Jayant Chaudhary is the third and Priyanka Gandhi is the fourth generation of the Nehru-Gandhi family who is leading the Congress in the state.

Modi targeted the P and its allies, terming them as “ghor- parivarvadi log”. But in reality the BJP is not far behind in dynastic politics. Priyanka Gandhi said: “The Prime Minister has a problem with only one family, that is the Gandhi family as he knows they will not bow down but he has no problem in admitting the dynasts of the Congress.” Her indication was towards Jitin Prasada, Jyotiraditya Scindia and RPN Singh who had ditched thr Congress and joined the BJP.

Prasada and RPN Singh are second generation in politics while Scindia is third generation in politics. Not only former Congressmen, but the BJP has its own set of dynasts who are rising in politics.

Talking of Uttar Pradesh, Noida MLA Pankaj Singh is the son of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Rajveer Singh, MP, is the son of Kalyan Singh, Ashutosh Tandon is the son of Lalji Tandon, Sidharth Nath Singh is related to Lal Bahadur Shastri.

The list doesn’t end with Uttar Pradesh. Vasundhara Raje, Yashodhra Raje and Dushyant Singh are from the family of Vijayaraje Scindia who was the founder of the BJP. Similarly, Union Minister Anurag Thakur is the son of former Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal, Dharmendra Pradhan’s father was also in the BJP and MoS in the Vajpayee government, Piyush Goyal’s father was treasurer of the BJP for a long time. Maneka Gandhi and her son Varun Gandhi too are MPs.

Pramod Mahajan’s daughter is a MP in the Lok Sabha, BS Yedyurappa’s son has also taken the plunge into politics. So Congress leaders say that dynasts are rising in the BJP also but the BJP says that they are there but the party is not run by a family.

The BJP says that the Congress, SP and the RLD are run by families. However, the Congress points out that the party does not have a problem with YSR Reddy’s son Jagan who is the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister as he is supporting the BJP, but has a problem with Uddhav Thackeray, Hemant Soren and MK Stalin as they are opposed to the BJP. Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik too has taken the baton from his father.

The Prime Minister has been saying during campaigning that “earlier governments had no vision because of ‘parivarvaad’ (nepotism). They could not see or think beyond family. They did not worry about you but only ran everything via mafias. We bring permanent solutions and want every citizen to live with self-respect”.

In the Uttar Pradesh elections the dynasts have been fielded by all the parties. The BJP’s Saurav Singh, seeking a second term from Kheri district, is the son of Jugul Kishore, who has been a Rajya Sabha MP from the BSP and is currently a minister in the UP cabinet.

The BJP’s Mukut Bihari Verma’s son Gaurav Verma is contesting in place of his father from Kaiserganj.

Similarly, Prateek Bhushan Singh, son of Kaiserganj BJP MP Brij Bhushan Singh, is seeking re-election from Gonda. Prateek’s rival from the SP is Suraj Singh, who is a nephew of Pandit Singh, a former minister in the state who passed away due to Covid.

Even as the BJP has been attacking the Congress and the SP for being “dynasty” oriented, examples of relatives of its MPs and MLAs getting tickets have exposed the party.

The SP has fielded Anandsen from Rudauli, who is the son of Mitrasen Yadav, a former MP.

Yasir Shah, son of former minister Waqar Shah, is seeking a third term on an SP ticket. Yasir’s wife is also contesting and his mother was a Lok Sabha MP from Bahraich.

The Congress is not far behind. P.L. Punia’s son Tanuj Punia is fighting in Barabanki district. Salman Khurshid’s wife Louis Khurshid, who was a MLA in the past, was in the fray in the third phase.



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