Amid reports that Mayawati has expressed dissatisfaction over the Lok Sabha elections performance of the alliance between the BSP and the Samajwadi Party, sources told News Nation that the Bahujan Samaj Party chief praised SP president Akhilesh Yadav for contesting the polls confidently.
According to the sources in the BSP, Mayawati, in fact, praised Akhilesh at least six times at a meeting of the Bahujan Samaj Party's Uttar Pradesh unit in New Delhi on Monday. She also expressed her regret that Akhilesh’s wife Dimple Yadav failed to retain her Lok Sabha seat. While Dimple lost the election by over 12,000 votes in Kannauj, Akhilesh’s two cousins Dharmendra Yadav and Akshay Yadav also lost from Badaun and Ferozabad constituencies respectively.
The BSP got 10 seats in this Lok Sabha polls as against 2014 polls when it could not even manage one seat.
The sources also said Mayawati blamed the Congress and Shivpal Singh Yadav’s Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohiya) for the alliance’s poor performance in the elections. She said after Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav's younger brother Shivpal decided to contest separately the community votes were not transferred to the BSP, thus the move weakened the BSP’s fight against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Several media reports suggest that Mayawati said the Lok Sabha poll drubbing in Uttar Pradesh was due to the "poor performance" of the alliance with the SP and asked party leaders and workers to be prepared to contest the assembly by-elections on their own.
At the meeting, she also asked office bearers, MLAs and newly elected MPs to not depend on the alliance to win votes but to improve the party's organisation.
News agency PTI reported that she told the gathering at the party headquarters that the BSP won 10 seats in UP due to its traditional vote bank and the votes of Samajwadi Party could not get transferred to its candidates. However, Mayawati did not directly talked about the future of the alliance with Akhilesh Yadav's SP and only asked the party workers to adopt a "wait and watch" policy till their family dispute was over.
Interestingly, amid these reports, Akhilesh said the SP will fight for social justice together with the BSP.
"We and Bahujan Samaj Party will fight for social justice together," said Yadav, addressing a public meeting in Azamgarh during his first visit to the constituency after declaration of the Lok Sabha poll results.
Akhilesh, however, defended the poll performance of the alliance, saying that the Lok Sabha poll battle this time was of a different kind, which he could not understand.
"It was a race between Ferrari and a cycle (the SP's election symbol). Everybody knew the Ferrari will win. The Lok Sabha elections were not fought on issues, it was fought on something else," said Yadav.
The SP chief also subtly blamed media for his party poor performance in the polls.
(With PTI inputs)