Having failed to dislodge the government during the trust vote, the Left Front, BSP and some other parties have set into motion a new dynamic aimed at the formation of a Third Front. While this may prove a platform for Mayawati to project herself as a potential Prime Minister, it is a desperate move by the others to salvage their dipping political fortunes.
At a meeting of 10 parties — including BSP, RLD, the Left parties, TDP, JD(S) and INLD — on Wednesday at Mayawati’s residence, it was decided that a national campaign would be launched against the government and “communal forces”. It would be against inflation, the nuclear deal, agrarian distress and misuse of CBI against political opponents.
If such an alliance shapes up, Mayawati can project herself as the leader of a “pro-poor”, secular platform. While this will help her appeal to Dalits outside UP by claiming national rather than regional status, it will also help her reach out to Muslims in UP as an alternative anti-BJP force to the SP.
For the Left, the arrangement can be a face-saver. They can claim that their agenda of a non-Congress, non-BJP alternative is on track. For the likes of Ajit Singh, HD Deve Gowda, N Chandrababu Naidu and K Chandrashekhar Rao — all on the decline — such a grouping is a good way to fight political irrelevance.
Though a potential alliance between these parties can lead to an impressive tally of seats, the aaya ram gaya ram nature of many of these parties can spoil the calculations.