SP, BSP decide on ‘equal seat-sharing formula’

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 06 Jan 2019 09:00:33


 

LUCKNOW,

According to sources, the two parties have decided on an equal seat-sharing formula and would field candidates from 37 seats each in the crucial poll State that sends 80 lawmakers to the Lok Sabha,  leaving just six seats for the other players of the Grand Alliance, including the Congress.

THE Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party have agreed to an alliance ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, an SP leader said on Saturday. According to sources close to developments, the two parties have decided on an equal seat-sharing formula and would field candidates from 37 seats each in the crucial poll State that sends 80 lawmakers to the Lok Sabha, leaving just six seats for the other players of the Grand Alliance, including the Congress.


The inclusion of the Congress in the Grand Alliance has been heavily speculated over the past few months and statements made by Mayawati and Akhilesh have hinted that both parties are not too keen to cede space to the Congress in the seat sharing agreement keeping in mind the party’s poor track record in the last few elections in the State. A formal announcement on the “gathbandhan” between the two Uttar Pradesh-based parties may take place later this month, SP’s national spokesperson Rajendra Chaudhary told PTI.


When asked about the possible inclusion of Congress in the UP alliance, Chaudhary said, “This will be decided by Akhilesh Yadav and Mayawati.” But he added the alliance will not field candidates in Amethi and Raebareli, leaving the two Lok constituencies for Congress President Rahul Gandhi and United Progress Alliance chief Sonia Gandhi.


According to BJP’s own calculations, an SP-BSP alliance may cost the party at least 25-30 seats in the state in the general elections. The BJP and its allies had won 73 of the 80 seats in the 2014 parliamentary elections. The ‘mahagathbandhan’ arithmetic had worked in the bypolls as a consolidation of OBC, Dalit and Muslim votes powered Samajwadi Party candidates to victory in Gorakhpur and Phulpur last year. Politically crucial Uttar Pradesh sends 80 MPs to the Lok Sabha.


The Opposition parties defeated the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party in three Lok Sabha bypolls last year. In the Kairana Lok Sabha by-elections in May last year, the BJP lost to the joint Opposition candidate, RLD’s Tabassum Hasan. The seat had fallen vacant following the death of the BJP  candidate Mriganka Singh’s father Hukum Singh. Tabassum Hasan was supported by the Congress, the SP and the BSP.


In March, the BJP lost the Lok Sabha bypolls in Gorakhpur and Phulpur. In the last parliamentary elections in 2014, the BJP won 71 seats, securing 42.63 per cent of the votes. BJP ally Apna Dal bagged two seats. Samajwadi Party won five seats with a vote share of 22.35 per cent. The BSP did not win any seat while securing 19.77 per cent votes. Congress registered wins on two seats in 2014, bagging 7.53 per cent of the votes.