Post-poll alliances in Uttar Pradesh were anybody’s guess on Sunday with parties having a stake in the state throwing up varying possibilities and indulging in posturing.
While the exit polls predicted a certain defeat for Mayawati, union steel minister and Congress leader Beni Prasad Verma put his weight behind her BSP. He said the Congress should prefer the BSP in case no party gets a majority.
“I personally prefer the BSP to the Samajwadi Party (SP). Mayawati has controlled lawlessness from Kanpur to Etah,” said Verma, who defected from the SP before the 2009 general elections. The Congress distanced itself from his statement.
“Whatever Verma said was his personal opinion. The party high command will take a decision after taking into account all aspects and only after the results are out on Tuesday,” said Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi. Party sources said Verma’s statement looked like a dig at SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav.
Congress ally and civil aviation minister Ajit Singh rubbished reports of his Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) joining hands with Mulayam.
“We have an alliance with the Congress in UP and at the Centre. The two parties will take a collective decision,” Singh said.
The SP chief’s son, Akhilesh Yadav, on the other hand, expressed confidence that his party would get a majority and would not need the Congress. He said Mulayam was the chief ministerial candidate.