Lucknow, Nov 20 (SocialNews.XYZ) The by-election to the Rampur assembly seat in Uttar Pradesh has already made history.
For the first time ever, a Congress leader has given his tacit support to the BJP candidate, creating an upheaval in his entire party.
Nawab Kazim Ali Khan, who is a senior member of the Congress, has extended his support to BJP's candidate Akash Saxena.
Saxena confirmed that Kazim Ali has announced his support to him.
Kazim Ali was however, unavailable for comment.
A scion of the local royal family, Kazim Ali has been a five-time MLA from Rampur and his hostility with SP veteran Mohd Azam Khan, whose disqualification has necessitated the by poll in Rampur, has already acquired legendary proportions.
Akash, meanwhile, is the son of former party MP from Rampur, Shiv Bahadur Saxena.
The Samajwadi Party (SP) has fielded Asim Raza, an associate of Azam Khan and Kazim Ali, who is the son of former Congress MP Begum Noor Bano, will not support anyone backed by Azam Khan.
Interestingly, Raza had unsuccessfully contested Lok Sabha by-poll recently from Rampur.
A senior BJP leader said Kazim Ali's support to Akash Saxena will certainly help the BJP since elections are fought on perceptions.
Kazim Ali's support to the BJP could turn the Shia votes in favour of Akash Saxena.
"Kazim Ali's support is for Akash Saxena and not for the BJP, primarily, because Akash had taken up the cudgel against his arch-rival Azam Khan and he is a party in over 80 cases against former SP minister. It was Saxena's complaint that led to Azam's disqualification in a hate speech case," said a source close to Kazim Ali.
Meanwhile, the development has created a furore in the Uttar Pradesh Congress with a section of party leaders demanding action against Kazim Ali.
"At a time when the Congress party is battling against the BJP and Rahul Gandhi is on his Bharat Jodo Yatra against communal forces, Kazim Ali has decided to support a BJP candidate. In politics, there is nothing like 'personal support'. The party high command should take note of this and ensure action," said a senior party leader.
A former UPCC president said that Nawab Kazim Ali's loyalty to the party was already questionable since he had switched to SP and the Bahujan Samaj Party in the past.