Mayawati’s social engineering is resonating in the rural areas of Noida. Known for her formula for bringing together Dalit as well as Brahmin voters together to ensure victory, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has fielded a Brahmin again for the Noida assembly constituency.
The Dalits, Brahmins and Gujjars in Noida villages say they will vote for the BSP. While the Dalits find the BSP a natural choice, the Brahmins have extended support as the party candidate is a Brahmin. The Gujjars say that like the previous assembly elections, they will vote for the BSP this time as well. Whether the assurances by the voters prior to the polls will consolidate BSP’s vote to translate into the victory of its candidate Ravi Kant Mishra is a moot question.
With a large number of voters from the three communities in the Noida assembly seat, BSP is in the reckoning. It came second after the BJP in 2012 assembly polls.
In 2012 assembly elections in Noida, BJP’s Mahesh Kumar Sharma (77, 319 votes) won the seat, followed by BSP’s Om Dutt Sharma (49,643 votes). Samajwadi Party’s Sunil Choudhary (42,071 votes) came third.
As per election commission data, there are nearly 5.10 lakh votes in Noida assembly constituency. Of these, nearly 1.25 lakh voters live in urban villages of Noida. (The election commission will release the final revised voter list soon.)
Manish Sharma, former pradhan of Nagla Charandas village opposite sector 81, said the village with over 1,500 houses has nearly one third of population of each community and all of them are going to vote for the BSP. “There are nearly 33% Brahmins, 33% Gujjars and the remaining 33% are Dalits, with another 100 voters from the Muslim community. All the communities have decided to vote for the BSP,” he said.
When asked why they wanted to vote for the BSP, Sharma said,“Behenji has done a lot development in Noida. The law and order was good during her regime. The SP ended the Gram Pradhan system, which was very important for the development of villages. We are sure that she will revive the system.”
Echoing similar views, Rajender, former Pradhan of Bhuda village, said,“Like 2012 assembly election, the Gujjars are going to vote for the BSP in the upcoming polls. We voted for the BJP in 2014 Lok Sabha polls. But in assembly polls, our vote will go to the BSP as she has done a lot for Noida.”
As for the development in Bhuda and Nagla Charandas, a reinforced-concrete-cement (RCC) road connecting the two villages was laid during Mayawati’s tenure. “Behenji has not done much development in our area. But we will still vote for her in the elections. We want her to be the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh the fifth time,” said Rajesh Kumar, a Jatav.