Bijawar in MP saves the day for SP
Its showing in Bijawar in Madhya Pradesh saved the day for the Samajwadi Party (SP). The SP drew a blank in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan. It did not contest in Telangana and Mizoram.
The party takes the result as a shot in its arm as it now will have representation in three state assemblies— Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
Samajwadi Party spokesperson Abdul Hafiz Gandhi said: “The results are encouraging for us. We went to the people with our own set of promises. People reposed their confidence in us. Above all, the party has strengthened its organisational structure in MP, Chhattisgarh, and Rajasthan.”
However, party president Akhilesh Yadav’s ambition of earning the national tag for the regional party will have to wait. The SP has a long way to go to meet the criteria set by the Election Commission in this respect.
The Samajwadi Party’s Rajesh Kumar ‘Babloo Bhaiya maintained a consistent lead over the BJP’s Pushpendra Nath Pathak ‘Guddan Bhaiya’ in Bijawar since the first round. He won by a margin of 36,714. The SP since morning had been in a neck and neck fight with BJP in Paraswada. Eventually, both SP and BJP lost and the Congress overtook them both to add the seat to its tally.
The Samajwadi Party had entered the 2018 state assembly elections with an intention to spread its wings in other Hindi-belt states like Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.
The SP focused on Madhya Pradesh more for the reason that it was there that it had registered its best performance ever outside Uttar Pradesh.
The SP had won seven seats in the central Indian state in 2003, polling 3.7% of the votes.
Akhilesh began the poll preparations in June by visiting Madhya Pradesh. The party sent observers from Lucknow to MP, Chhattisgarh, and Rajasthan in July to assess possibilities, select constituencies, and candidates.
Initially, the party hoped for a suitable alliance with the Congress. Eventually, Akhilesh declared his party would contest the polls without the Congress. Reason: he did not get the kind of deal he had given to the Congress in the 2017 UP assembly polls.
The SP tied up with the Gondwana Gantantra Party in MP and Chhattisgarh.
Initially, Akhilesh declared the SP will contest all the 230 seats in MP and all the 90 in Chhattisgarh. Eventually, the party fielded 52 candidates in MP and 17 in Chattisgarh. It contested five seats in Rajasthan.
Akhilesh addressed 17 rallies in three states: 12 in MP, two in Chhattisgarh, and three in Rajasthan.
He visited Madhya Pradesh three times before the actual launch of the campaign there.