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Lok Sabha Elections 2019: This poll season, turncoats are having a field day

In Baghpat, BJP got BSP leader Harbir Singh to join it, making it clear that political loyalties were on test ahead of the polls in which the BJP is expecting a tough fight from the SP-BSP-RLD alliance.

lok-sabha-elections Updated: Mar 17, 2019 11:44 IST
Manish Chandra Pandey
Manish Chandra Pandey
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Poll season is also a season of turncoats with the 2019 Lok Sabha elections being no exception.
Poll season is also a season of turncoats with the 2019 Lok Sabha elections being no exception.(PTI)
         

Poll season is also a season of turncoats with the 2019 Lok Sabha elections being no exception.

On Saturday, a sitting BJP MP in Uttar Pradesh defected to the Samajwadi Party, which promptly made him its candidate from Banda, while the BSP is likely to field Danish Ali, general secretary of Karanataka’s ruling JD-(S), from Amroha.

In Baghpat, BJP got BSP leader Harbir Singh to join it, making it clear that political loyalties were on test ahead of the polls in which the BJP is expecting a tough fight from the SP-BSP-RLD alliance.

Amid indications that the BJP was looking to poach on leaders of RLD and BSP, RLD leader Jayant Chaudhary met BSP chief Mayawati to discuss political strategies in Lucknow on Saturday.  

Interestingly, BJP MP Shyama Charan Gupta, who was fielded from Allahabad Lok Sabha constituency in 2014 Lok Sabha polls, was upset with the BJP for a while.

Few months back he had publicly hit out at his party government in UP, saying corruption had even surpassed that of SP and BSP. Few days back BJP MP from Bahraich Savitri Bai Phule had joined the Congress, which has now fielded her from Bahraich. 

Danish Ali’s defection, however, came as a surprise. Soon after Ali joined BSP and affirmed his faith in ‘behenji’s’ leadership, Karanataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy, who is running a coalition government with Congress support, tweeted: “Danish Ali, the JDS general secretary has joined BSP in consent with me and our national president HD Deve Gowda in a purely political arrangement between the two parties. It is a thoughtful political decision taken by the JDS and BSP to win more seats in the Lok Sabha elections.”

“It’s simply ‘my candidate-your party’ kind of arrangement that the two parties seem to have entered into,” a BJP leader said, adding the BSP appeared to have taken a leaf out of SP chief Akhilesh Yadav’s book when he had used this formula in the by-polls. In the Lok Sabha by-polls to Gorakhpur and Kairana seats, Yadav had successfully used this formula. He had fielded son of Nishad Party chief on his party ticket and then fielded his candidate on RLD symbol in Kairana. In both the places SP won. Interestingly, while Kumaraswamy said Danish Ali’s switch was due to tactical reasons and in consultation with him, Ali didn’t make any such mention. “I am from UP. So to strengthen the forces against BJP and to realise the dreams of Dr Ambedkar, Kanshiramji, Lohiaji and Chaudhary Charan Singhji I have joined the BSP,” he said. BSP general secretary Satish Mishra welcomed Ali.

The BJP had recently inducted several important leaders belonging to the BSP, including Captain Sikander Rizvi, who had earlier served as Mayawati’s OSD. 

First Published: Mar 17, 2019 11:44 IST

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