If need be, will sacrifice some seats for BSP: SP chief Akhilesh
Amidst the growing impression of Bahujan Samaj Party playing hard ball on seat sharing ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha poll, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav said that his party was ready to sacrifice few seats to continue its alliance with BSP and ensure the defeat of BJP in the next elections.
The SP chief’s statement follows strong belief in political circles that the BSP could dump the SP as it was more interested in an alliance with the Congress in UP.
Mayawati has already stated that she was game for an alliance in UP only if her party got a respectable number of seats. The BSP is said to have staked its claims on 40 Lok Sabha seats out of a total of 80 seats in UP.
Samajwadi Party sources said that after extending support to party candidates for Gorakhpur and Phulpur Lok Sabha bypoll, Mayawati developed cold feet and her party remained neutral during Kairana Lok Sabha bypoll. The change in BSP stance forced the SP to rejig its political strategy.
“Bahujan Samaj Party is eyeing the 2022 Assembly elections and if she forges an alliance with Samajwadi Party for 2019 Lok Sabha polls then it might create several unforeseen political hurdles for the party to part company with the SP ahead of 2022 Assembly poll,’’ said a senior SP leader.
“0Mayawati stands to gain nothing by aligning with the SP for 2019 Lok Sabha polls as it would be strengthening her arch rival in Uttar Pradesh,’’ he opined.
Moreover, the SP leader said, “Mayawati has already forged a political understanding with the Congress to contest Assembly polls in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. She is also likely to strike a deal for Assembly poll in Rajasthan.’’
Mayawati is interested in alligning with the Congress for the 2019 general elections as the link-up could be be repeated in 2022 Assembly elections. The reason is thatthe BSP would be more comfortable in this alliance as it will have an assured vote bank of Dalits, Muslims and a small share of upper caste voters,’’ said the SP leader.
Meanwhile, UP minister Swami Prasad Maurya said that the new-found bonhomie between the SP and BSP would not last long and it would end before 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
“Bua and Babua (Mayawati and Akhilesh Yadav) will fight between themselves. This isn’t an alliance based on issues and an issue-less alliance never works,” he said.
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