‘Neither visited, nor called after poll defeat’: Mayawati attacks Akhilesh
At her party’s national executive meeting, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati on Sunday blamed Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav for the humiliating defeat of their alliance in Lok Sabha elections, according to party leaders.
A BSP leader, who was present at the meeting, quoted Mayawati as saying that Yadav had neither visited nor talked to her over phone ever since the Lok Sabha election results were announced.
“Behenji [Mayawati] told party leaders that Akhilesh had an important say in seat-sharing between the alliance partners and played a pivotal role in the selection of candidates. She said Akhilesh asked her to field minimum Muslim candidates as it might lead to polarisation during election. Terming it a bad advice, she said it proved to be an important factor in the defeat of the alliance,” the leader said.
He said Mayawati was of the view that when the SP was in power (2012-17), the Yadav community was a major beneficiary while other backward castes were ignored. Policies of the SP government angered other backward class communities, who voted against the SP-BSP alliance, the leader added. Another BSP leader said Mayawati’s attack on Yadav indicated final severing of ties with the SP.
SP spokesman Rajendra Chaudhary refused to comment. The Bharatiya Janata Party’s Chandramohan said the SP-BSP alliance represented politics of opportunism. “During the Lok Sabha campaign, chief minister Yogi Adityanath had said the alliance would collapse after the Lok Sabha election results.”
Mayawati had earlier said her party’s decision to contest the upcoming bypolls to 12 assembly seats did not mean a permanent break-up between BSP and SP. “The door for alliance is very much open...,” she had said.