Monday, 20 May, 2019

BJP's UP ally threatens party with boycotting Rajya Sabha polls

BJP's UP ally threatens party with boycotting Rajya Sabha polls BJP's UP ally threatens party with boycotting Rajya Sabha polls
Patty Aguilar | 19 March, 2018, 17:31

The defeat of the BJP in the recent Lok Sabha byelections in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar proved that the people were not happy with the party, particularly for its economic policies, CPI (M) said yesterday.

Yogi, who was taking part in a media event, was asked whether the BJP would be able to win bulk of the seats in 2019 as it did in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

The BJP lost out to the SP in both Gorakhpur and Phulpur, the former vacated by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and the latter by his Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya when they were elected to the legislative council. To attribute the loss to the "overconfidence" of the party cadre is to miss the woods for the trees.

The Shiv Sena made this gloomy prediction following the recently concluded UP and Bihar bypolls, where the party lost its stronghold in Gorakhpur and Phulpur to the strategic BSP-SP alliance. The first is that BJP has a real challenge in 2019 Lok Sabha elections if SP and BSP decide to continue with the alliance and contest against the BJP.

Gorakhpur seat is critical for the BJP because it has been held by the party since 1991 and Adityanath himself has been a five-time MP from the constituency. It had won 71 out of 80 Lok Sabha seats in UP in 2014, representing more than 25% of the total Lok Sabha seats won by the BJP in 2014. The nominations for the Rajya Sabha elections have been done.

He accused the BJP government of paying attention only to temples and doing nothing for the poor, backwards, Dalits and farmers.

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The monk-turned-politician, who was hailed as an "icon" and a "mass leader" when he took oath as Chief Minister exactly an year ago, is now being openly targeted by rebel party leaders.

"Amidst all this, it is clear now, that in 2019, the BJP's numbers will not be 280, but it will plummet by at least 100-110 seats". Focussing its scarce resources where it is truly in contention while enabling allies and playing honest broker where it isn't could be Congress's best bet for the next general elections.

"There can be some contest on the ninth seat", a senior UP BJP leader said.

Yet, no time has been ripe during the last four years for such a dinner party or to stitch a non-BJP alliance.

The SP has fielded Jaya Bachchan and BSP Bhimrao Ambedkar.

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