BJP is making all efforts to ensure that not only it repeats its stellar performance in the ongoing civic polls but also improves its tally. For the purpose, the party has roped in 31 MLAs whose Assembly constituencies do not have a nagar panchayat or nagar palika parishad within their limits.
"Different tasks have been assigned to the 31 MLAs, ranging from actively campaigning for the party candidates to organising various events to galvanise public support for the party," said state BJP spokesperson Rakesh Tripathi.
"Take for example Satish Chandra Dwivedi. He is an MLA from the Itwa Assembly constituency in Siddharthanagar district. But, since there is no nagar panchayat or nagar palika parishad in Itwa, he has been engaged in party activities in the neighbouring Basti district," he added.
Meanwhile, Satish Chandra Dwivedi has asserted that the BJP would "sweep" the polls.
According to the State Election Commission, 24 districts have already voted in the first phase of the polls on November 22, while 25 districts are going to the polls on Sunday. As many as 26 districts will go to the polls on November 29.
The counting of votes polled for 16 nagar nigams, 198 nagar palika parishads and 438 nagar panchayats will be done on December 1.
Over 3.36 crore voters will exercise their franchise at 36,269 polling booths.
The civic polls, which are being held eight months after the BJP came to power in the state with a landslide victory, will mark the first electoral test for the Yogi Adityanath government.
State BJP chief Mahendra Nath Pandey said, "The feedback we had received from the party workers after the voting ended in the first phase (of the urban local bodies polls) was indeed very encouraging. The BJP is going to bag three-fourths of all the seats in these polls."
First-time MLA Pankaj Singh said, "For BJP workers, every election is a challenge. But, I am confident that the party will sweep the urban local bodies polls as it had done in the 2014 Lok Sabha election and the 2017 UP Assembly election."
According to the State Election Commission, the overall polling percentage in the first phase stood at 52.59. In 2012, the polling percentage in these districts was 46.1.
The highest polling in the first phase was recorded in Hamirpur, which had witnessed a 69.59 per cent turnout, followed by Amethi.