ARCHRIVALS, the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party, both have rural mass bases, but they will test each other’s strength in the urban areas during the civic bodies elections.
BSP supremo Mayawati directed party leaders on Thursday to start preparations for the civic bodies poll. “Elections to urban local bodies are being held just before the Vidhan Sabha elections. The results of the civic polls will not only throw light on the support enjoyed by the party in the urban areas, but also gear up the party cadre for the crucial Vidhan Sabha poll”, she said.
Addressing the MPs, MLAs, MLCs and party leaders in a meeting organised at the party office, Mayawati directed them to take the urban local bodies poll seriously. “The Bahujan Samaj Party will contest the elections in full strength and put in all resources to ensure the victory of its candidates in the elections for corporators, chairmen of municipal councils and mayors”, she said.
Earlier, the Bahujan Samaj Party took little interest in the civic polls. But this time the BSP plans to cash in on the tilt of the upper castes toward the elephant (BSP symbol). With Brahmin, Thakur, Kayastha and Vaishya castes vying for BSP tickets, the party leadership hopes that the urban middle class will vote for its candidates in the civic polls.
The BSP has already started preparations for the Vidhan Sabha elections. Mayawati directed the party leaders to go slow on the Vidhan Sabha elections and focus on the civic bodies election instead. “The constitution of the booth committees for the Vidhan Sabha elections will start after the civic bodies elections are over”, she said.
Exhorting the party cadre to gear up for the civic polls, Mayawati reminded them to continue with the meetings of the ‘samaj jodo’ committees. The meetings of the ‘all the castes’ committees will continue as per schedule.
Election coordinators and MLAs were directed to begin selection of candidates for the posts of mayors, chairmen and corporators. “The final list of the candidates will be submitted to ‘Behenji’ on August 15”, said a party leader.