The elephant trampled on its rivals. In a jolt to its political opponents, the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) swept the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council elections, bagging 31 of the 33 seats for which results were declared on Wednesday.
Rivals Samajwadi Party and the Congress managed to win just one seat each.
With 54 seats in its kitty, the BSP has now secured a majority in the 100-member Vidhan Parishad. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati called the victory voters’ approval of BSP government’s policies. “The BSP got support from all communities,” she said.
The Samajwadi Party (SP) was the biggest loser. Of the 36 seats that went to polls, SP was defending 22. It was crushed even on traditional strongholds such as Etawah, Etah, Mainpuri and Firozabad.
The SP’s drubbing came barely two months after it failed to retain the Firozabad Lok Sabha seat in November by-elections.
“There was massive misuse of government machinery and use of money and muscle power,” Leader of Opposition Shivpal Yadav said.
In a humiliating defeat, the Bharatiya Janata Party drew a blank. The party won six seats in 2003. Not surprisingly, its spokesman, too, made allegations similar to those levelled by the SP against the BSP.
“Democracy has lost in this election. The BSP’s victory is the triumph of money and muscle power,” said BJP state vice-president Hirday Narayan Dixit.
Counting for three seats in West Uttar Pradesh — Meerut, Bulandshahr and Aligarh — will be held on Thursday.
In a repeat of 2003, the Congress managed to wrest just one seat, its bastion Rae Bareli, represented in the Lok Sabha by Sonia Gandhi.
Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee president Rita Bahuguna Joshi also alleged the BSP had rigged the polls. “There was massive rigging and official machinery was misused by the BSP. Our party will file a petition with the Election Commission against this.”