Shahjahanpur (UP), Jan 26, 2022 – Others are contesting elections to win their seats but UP minister, Suresh Khanna, is contesting elections to set a record of winning his seat for the ninth consecutive term.
Khanna has been winning the seat continuously since 1989. He has held several portfolios in BJP governments and is presently the Parliamentary Affairs minister in the Yogi Adityanath government.
He belongs to the Khatri community that comprises only 1 per cent population of the area.
If he wins his seat this time, he will equal the record of Ram Sewak of Congress, from the Jagdishpur constituency in Amethi district, who won nine consecutive times.
Khanna, 67, plunged into politics during his days at Lucknow University in 1977 where he studied law.
He contested his first assembly elections from Shahjahanpur in 1980 as a Lok Dal nominee and was defeated by Congress candidate, Nawab Sadiq Ali Khan.
Undeterred by defeat, Khanna continued to work in Shahjahanpur, and in 1985, BJP awarded him party ticket for the assembly polls.
This time he was defeated by Nawab Sikandar Ali Khan of Congress by a margin of around 4,000 votes.
In 1989, however, the tide of luck turned and he defeated Nawab Sikandar Ali. After that win, Khanna said he never looked back, winning consecutive elections.
Interestingly, the Shahjahanpur seat has roughly 37 per cent Muslim voters and from 1952 to 1989, the seat was won mostly by Muslim candidates, barring 1969 when Uma Shankar Shukla from the Bhartiya Jana Sangh was elected.
This time, Khanna has been pitted against Tanveer Khan from the SP and 32-year-old Asha worker, Poonam Pandey, from the Congress. (Agency)