Chandra Shekhar's son Neeraj resigns from RS

Neeraj Shekhar

In a setback for Samajwadi Party (SP), its MP Neeraj Shekhar on Monday resigned from Rajya Sabha, apparently upset over being sidelined in the party.

There are speculation that the 50-year-old MP may join the BJP but Neeraj Shekhar, the son of late Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar, could not be contacted for his version.

Sources said Neeraj Shekhar personally met Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu to hand over his resignation and explained he was doing so. Naidu accepted his resignation after Shekhar informed him that his resignation was voluntary and he was not rethinking on withdrawing it, they added.

With this, the SP strength in the Upper House has come down to 12. It has five MPs in the new Lok Sabha.

His term was to end on 25 November 2020 and speculation is rife that he may get re-elected to Rajya Sabha on a BJP ticket.

Neeraj Shekhar had won from his father's Ballia constituency on a Samajwadi Party ticket in bypolls in 2007 after the death of his father and he was re-elected in the 2009 Lok Sabha polls too. However, in 2014, he lost the seat to BJP but was nominated by the SP to Rajya Sabha months after his defeat in Lok Sabha polls.

This time, he was keen to contest from Ballia but was denied ticket by party chief Akhilesh Yadav, who fielded Sanatan Pandey. Sources said Akhilesh's decision had upset Neeraj Shekhar.
In a latest biography on Chandra Shekhar, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh and Ravi Dutt Bajpai had recalled Neeraj Shekhar's election campaign in 2007.

“He (Chandra Shekhar) was accused of amassing an immeasurable amount of wealth, whereas reality is that his son Neeraj Shekhar had to collect funds through public donation to contest elections after is father's death,” the book 'Chandra Shekhar: The Last Icon of Ideological Politics' has claimed. 

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