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2019 Lok Sabha Elections: Alliance with Samajwadi Party is on for 2019 Lok Sabha elections: Mayawati | India News

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LUCKNOW: In a major boost to opposition unity in Uttar Pradesh, Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati said her party’s alliance with Samajwadi Party was on for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and a formal announcement would be made once the seat-sharing arrangement was finalised.

“A declaration has to be made and it will be done once we work out the seat-sharing arrangement. There is still time for Lok Sabha elections and we will work it out closer to the polls,” she told NDTV. Mayawati added that people were already aware of the SP-BSP alliance even though no formal announcement had been made yet.

In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the combined vote share of SP and BSP was 41.8%, while BJP and its ally Apna Dal got 43.3% and won 73 out of 80 seats in Uttar Pradesh. SP and BSP fought elections separately. While SP managed to win only five seats, BSP drew a blank. Congress’s vote share was 7.5% and it won two seats.

“As secular forces are uniting, communal forces like BJP and RSS are becoming increasingly worried. They wouldn’t like secular forces to unite and move forward,” Mayawati said.

BJP had to face a humiliating defeat by the SP-BSP combine in Gorakhpur and Phulpur Lok Sabha bye-elections in March. Mayawati supported SP days before the crucial bypolls for seats that were vacated by CM Yogi Adityanath and deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya. The coming together of the two parties saw caste equations work in their favour.

In the forthcoming Kairana Lok Sabha and Noorpur Assembly bypolls, Mayawati has reportedly asked her party cadres to work for SP and RLD candidates to defeat BJP.

There had been signs of souring ties when SP failed to ensure victory for BSP’s lone candidate in Rajya Sabha elections after the bypolls. While BJP had tried to “warn” Mayawati against trusting SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, she lashed out at the ruling party, saying it would not make any difference to the “closeness” between the two parties. Subsequently, SP contested one of two non-BJP seats for MLC elections, allowing BSP to field its candidate on the other one.

When asked whether BJP was trying to put pressure on her as CBI recently took over the probe into alleged irregularities in the disinvestment of 21 state-owned sugar mills in 2010-11 when she was CM, she said: “BSP has never come under pressure from BJP or Congress or any other parties. BSP has always fought back.”

The divestment has allegedly caused a loss of Rs 1,179 crore to the state exchequer.

Updated: May 7, 2018 — 7:27 pm

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