With Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh around the corner, as part of a new political manoeuvring, 11 suspended MLAs from Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) have decided to float a new political outfit before the elections.
The new party will be formed under the leadership of Lalji Verma, who was recently expelled from the party.
Earlier, nine MLAs suspended from the BSP met SP chief Akhilesh Yadav at Samajwadi Party office in Lucknow on Tuesday. This meeting sparked the speculation that the rebel MLAs might join the SP and contest the upcoming Assembly elections as Samajwadi Party candidate.
Shravasti MLA Aslam Raini, who was suspended from the BSP after he rebelled against the party during the Rajya Sabha elections held in November 2020, told the media here on Tuesday that all the 11 rebel MLAs of BSP will form a new political party and Lalji will be the leader.
He said another expelled BSP leader Ram Achal Rajbhar is also with them.
“We will make Lalji the head of our party. All the 11 MLAs are united now. Right now we are short of one MLA, due to which a new party is not being formed immediately and if one more
MLA comes, then we will form the party immediately,” Raini added.
He said the name of the new party would be decided by Lalji.
Raini said, “We have no complaint with Bahujan Samaj Party president Mayawati, but we have serious issues with the behaviour of party’s national general secretary Satish Chandra Mishra.”
In his meeting with SP president Akhilesh, Raini said they discussed the political situation of the State. “We were not there to discuss weather,” he said.
Earlier in the morning on Tuesday six MLAs reached the SP office and later three more MLAs arrived. After the meeting, all of them left the office together from the back gate of the Samajwadi Party office.
When contacted, Akhilesh said these rebel BSP MLAs will strengthen SP’s campaign to oust BJP in 2022. He threw enough hints to suggest that if rebel BSP leaders form a separate party then also they will support SP.
The rebel BSP MLA who met Akhilesh included Aslam, Aslam Ali, Mujtaba Siddiqui, Hakim Lal, Sushma Patel and Hargovind Bhargava.
In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls SP-BSP had an alliance. The SP won five Lok Sabha seats and BSP 10. The alliance was called off soon after the Lok Sabha elections in May 2019.