Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday hinted at supporting the Bahujan Samaj Party leader as the prime ministerial candidate.
“Uttar Pradesh has given many prime ministers in the past. You know whom I will support. I will be happy if another prime minister comes from the state,” Yadav said, when asked whether he would support Mayawati as Prime minister.
Mayawati, however, deflected questions on whether she would contest the Lok Sabha polls or not. “In due time, you will be informed about this also,” she said, smiling.
“We are samajwadis who are always together in sorrow and happiness. The Bharatiya Janata Party can weave a conspiracy to weaken the alliance. It can also orchestrate riots and unrest to create differences between SP and BSP. I welcome the alliance again and assure that it will lead to the downfall of the BJP and its arrogant rule,” Akhilesh said.
In December last year, DMK chief MK Stalin had proposed Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s name as the opposition’s prime ministerial candidate but the idea was shot down by the entire opposition bloc, including Akhilesh Yadav’s party. The parties said such decisions should be taken only after the polls.
Akhilesh said, “The alliance was on my mind since the day the BJP leaders made obscene comments on Mayawatiji. But instead of punishing these leaders, the BJP rewarded them with plum posts in the government and the party organisation. From today onwards, all the SP workers should know that disrespect of Mayawatiji, will be my disrespect.”
Akhilesh said that casteism had taken all over and the BJP leaders had not even spared gods from it. “Even accident victims are asked their caste first in hospitals. The police ask the caste identity when one goes to police station for lodging an FIR. It is total chaos in the country. The SP and the BSP have come together to get people rid of the misrule of the BJP,” he said, adding that innocent people were being killed in encounters.
Interestingly, the SP president read from a prepared text which was unusual as he mostly addresses without referring to papers or is often impromptu.
To a question on seat-sharing with the Rashtriya Lok Dal in western UP, Akhilesh said the media would be informed about it in due course.