Not in race for UP CM, says Rajnath Singh

Not in race to become UP CM: Manoj Sinha

The appointed observers for Uttar Pradesh were expected to reach Lucknow on March 15 and the meeting with newly-elected MLAs was scheduled for March 16 but was cancelled at the last minute.

Asked specifically as to whether there was any likelihood of an election for the post of the leader of the Legislature Party, Pathak avoided a direct reply, saying, "I can't say".

The BJP has said party chief Amit Shah will take the final call. Unlike in other four states, when it comes to Uttar Pradesh all consultations have so far happened in Delhi. According to reports, the party will name the new CM keeping in mind the 2019 general elections.

Union Minister JP Nadda has said said that BJP president Amit Shah has been authorised to choose the next CM.

While the BJP scrambled to form its governments in Goa and Manipur, where it was not even the single largest party, hurriedly cobbling together post-poll alliances, amid the charge of "stealing" the mandate, the party leadership is taking its own sweet time to decide the Chief Minister of the countrys most populous and politically significant state. Their sights are set firmly on the 2019 national election when the party will want to retain the many new voters that it has gained in these assembly elections.

"This is because the kind of support people have given to us, we have to rise to their sky-high expectations, and it will be a challenge to fulfil those", he said.

Amid much speculation that union Home Minister Rajnath Singh could be sent to his home state as the next chief minister, sources said the BJP's top leadership is as yet undecided on this and front runners for the post remain union minister Manoj Sinha and the party's state chief Keshav Maurya. In this "caste-neutral" category, two more names that crop up are of veteran leaders Satish Mahana and Suresh Kumar Khanna, both belonging to the Punjabi Khatri community which has negligible presence in Uttar Pradesh.

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