Muslims should vote for a party and not a candidate to ensure that their votes are not divided, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati said in Saharanpur on Tuesday while alleging that the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) were working against her BSP.
Appealing to the 39 per cent Muslims in this Lok Sabha constituency, about 400 km from the state capital Lucknow, the Bahujan Samaj Party chief said: "You (Muslims) have to ensure that the BJP and the SP are not able to split your votes. For this, you should vote for a party and not for candidates on the basis of their religion."
Saharanpur, which goes to the polls in the last phase on May 13, is seeing a four-cornered contest with the SP fielding a Muslim candidate, Rasheed Masood, against the BSP's Jagdish Singh, the Congress' Chaudhry Gaje Singh and the BJP's Jaswant Saini.
Mayawati alleged that the BJP and SP were working together to defeat the BSP.
"For fighting against the BSP, both the parties (SP and BJP) are working together as part of their pact to mutually benefit each other in this election."
SP's decision to field a Muslim candidate from Saharanpur and its decision to not field a candidate from Ghaziabad against BJP president Rajnath Singh were examples of the pact between the two parties.
Accusing the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government of not taking significant steps for the development of Uttar Pradesh, Mayawati said: "The UPA government has never been serious about all-round development of UP."
If the BSP was voted to power at the centre, it would take immediate steps to solve the power crisis in the state and ensure that even rural areas get uninterrupted power supply throughout the day, the chief minister promised.