BSP-SP alliance announced, Mayawati calls it ‘a new political revolution’

Lucknow: Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Samajwadi Party (SP) will contest the 2019 Lok Sabha polls together, BSP supremo Mayawati announced on Saturday, calling their alliance ‘ a new political revolution’.

“We (BSP-SP) have decided to contest upcoming Lok Sabha elections together, this will lead to a new political revolution in the country. The alliance has been made keeping public interest in mind,” she said while addressing a joint press conference with SP president and former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav.

The foe-turned-friends have decided on a seat-sharing formula for the general elections which are expected to be announced soon. BSP and SP will contest on 38 seats each, while two Lok Sabha seats have been left for other parties.

The sole objective of the alliance, Mayawati said, would be to defeat the BJP rule. But she added that the BSP and the SP would not ally with the Congress party in the upcoming elections.

“Whether the mandate goes to the Congress or BJP, it is one and the same thing. Congress ruled the country for many years. At this time, the public was unhappy with their rule. The Congress lost out on power due to the Bofors scam, and now, the BJP will lose due to Rafale. Congress imposed declared emergency, today there is undeclared emergency. SP and BSP have both had separate experiences with the Congress from past alliances. Both BSP and SP have experienced in the past that Congress’s vote is not transferrable, based on which we have decided that we will not ally with the Congress,” Mayawati explained.

The SP-BSP alliance, however, has decided not to field their candidates in Congress party’s bastion Amethi and Rae Bareli – which are the parliamentary constituencies of Congress president Rahul Gandhi and his mother Sonia Gandhi, respectively.

“We have left Amethi and Rae Bareli Lok Sabha seats for Congress without an alliance with them so that the BJP does not succeed,” she said.

On the eve of the announcement, Akhilesh had said that the BJP, which the alliance intends to take on, has been using poll alliances for gains.

“Whatever arithmetic we learnt from the BJP, we will implement it,” he said at an event here on Friday.

SP and BSP have been in talks for weeks to forge an alliance. A recent meeting between Yadav and Mayawati had triggered a lot of speculation about seat-sharing being firmed up.

There was, however, ambiguity over whether the Congress would be a part of the alliance, amid indications that the SP and BSP were not inclined to include the party.