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India Mayawati says BSP will fight all polls alone, SP...

Mayawati says BSP will fight all polls alone, SP takes gloves off

The attitude of the SP has forced the BSP to think, said Mayawati. SP general secretary Ramashankar Vidyarthi said she spoke in haste.

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Lucknow: BSP president Mayawati on Monday declared her party in the future will contest all elections “small and big” on its own, signalling the end of the much-discussed Bahujan Samaj Party-Samajwadi Party alliance forged for the Lok Sabha polls.

Hours after Mayawati announced her plans of going solo in future elections in a series of tweets, a senior SP leader accused her of “weakening” the fight for social justice.

Mayawati’s announcement came a day after she held a meeting with party workers to review the BSP’s performance in the recent Lok Sabha polls. “Everyone is aware that forgetting everything of the past as also the anti-BSP and anti-Dalit decisions like reservation in promotions and bad law and order during the SP rule in 2012-17, the BSP adhered to the ‘gathbandhan dharma’ with the Samajwadi Party in the interest of the country,” she tweeted in Hindi.

“But the SP’s attitude after the elections has forced the BSP to think, will it be possible to defeat the BJP in the future? This is not possible,” Mayawati said.

“Therefore, in the interest of the party and the movement, the party will contest all small and big elections on its own strength,” Mayawati said. She did not elaborate on what she meant by the SP’s attitude.

Soon afterwards, SP national general secretary Ramashankar Vidyarthi told journalists in Balia that Mayawati was speaking against the SP in haste because of the Dalit support to his party and its leader Akhilesh Yadav.

“She is weakening the fight for social justice,” he said, adding that Dalit society is getting connected with the SP and Akhilesh Yadav in a big way.

People know about the reality about what the ‘malkin’ of the alliance has done, he said.

The Rashtriya Lok Dal, a minor partner in the grand alliance, said it had nothing to do with Monday’s developments.

“Our party has nothing to do with the BSP,” Uttar Pradesh RLD president Masood Ahmad told PTI.

He said the RLD was in alliance with the Samajwadi Party and not the BSP. “… and our alliance is intact,” he said.

“Today’s development concerns the SP and the BSP and they have to decide,” Ahmad said, adding it will not impact RLD’s alliance with the SP.

The BSP-SP-RLD alliance in Uttar Pradesh for the Lok Sabha polls failed to make an impact in the politically crucial state.

The BSP won 10 seats, a big gain from the zero in 2014, but the SP just managed to maintain its tally of five seats though it faced humiliating defeats in Badaun, Kannauj and Firozabad where its sitting MPs and family members. The RLD drew a blank in all the three seats it contested.

Commenting on the development, Congress spokesperson Dwijendra Tripathi said commitment is most important in politics.

“Commitment with the people as well as among political parties is very important… if people feel that politicians cannot keep their words while dealing with each other, they will not be able to keep their promises made to the people,” Tripathi said.

The problem that we are seeing now is an outcome of lack of commitment, he remarked.

An inkling of what was to come was available immediately after the Lok Sabha poll results were out.

Mayawati then said her party would go it alone in the upcoming by-polls to a dozen Assembly seats in UP.

Mayawati, according to party sources, had said the alliance was useless and Yadav votes were not transferred to the BSP.

For the record, however, she said at the time that electoral ties with the SP would continue.

In a statement 10 days after the defeat of the alliance in the Lok Sabha elections, Mayawati had said she can work with the SP in future if Yadav is able to “fulfil his duties”.

The often mercurial leader has patchy loyalty record with her party known to make and break alliances with more than one party.

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