Lok Sabha elections 2019: Amit Shah reaches out to miffed UP ally, assures solution
The Apna Dal counts Patels, an Other Backward Class community, among its core support base in eastern Uttar Pradesh.Updated: Feb 28, 2019 07:30 IST
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Amit Shah has reached out to the Apna Dal, an ally in Uttar Pradesh, and assured its leadership that he would address its issues with the party’s state unit, two leaders familiar with the matter said.
The Apna Dal counts Patels, an Other Backward Class community, among its core support base in eastern Uttar Pradesh. It has been upset over not getting its share in power in the country’s most populous state – Uttar Pradesh. The Apna Dal also wants a better deal in the seat sharing for the Lok Sabha elections due this summer, said a BJP leader privy to the discussions between the two parties.
Apna Dal leadership has expressed displeasure over the functioning within the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and sent feelers to the Congress that is attempting to get a foothold in eastern Uttar Pradesh.
“We will try to reasonably address their issues. We do not want to lose a valuable ally,” said one of the BJP leaders.
Apna Dal president Ashish Patel said they will wait for some more time before taking any call after meeting Shah on Tuesday. His wife, Anupriya Patel, who is a minister in the Narendra Modi government, too, was present at the meeting. The Apna Dal had called a meeting of its national executive committee on February 28 to take stock of the situation and decide the future course of action regarding its alliance with the BJP. “That meeting has been put off for now,” Patel said.
“We have some issues related to Uttar Pradesh BJP and the way we have been treated. We shared our views with Amit Shah, and he has assured that there will be a solution,” Ashish Patel said.
The Apna Dal had contributed two seats to the NDA’s tally as it swept the national polls in Uttar Pradesh and won 73 out of the 80 seats in the state in 2014. The two parties also contested the 2017 assembly election together as the BJP returned to power in Uttar Pradesh. Apna Dal won 9 out of 11 seats it contested in the assembly polls. Rohaniya and Sevapuri assembly constituencies are among the Apna Dal strongholds. They are a part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s parliamentary constituency, Varanasi. Anupriya Patel has been a lawmaker from Rohaniya.
First Published: Feb 27, 2019 23:41 IST