Left, BSP, UNPA combine may redefine national politics

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New Delhi, Jul 20 (UNI) The chain of political events triggered by the UPA Government's move to push the Indo-US civil nuclear deal today culminated in a formidable combine of the Left, the regional parties and the BSP, a development whose effects on national politics would cascade down beyond the immediate issue.

Politics of the Hindi heartland of Uttar Pradesh is occupying the centrestage.

The combine, a byproduct of the crisis on the nuclear pact, is the potential cause of worry not only for the Congress, but also for the BJP in the future.

Though the BJP stands with these parties as far as opposition to the Government on the nuclear accord is concerned, the grouping is being seen as a future Third Front, which is based on the principle of equidistance both from the Congress and the BJP.

Things started moving when the Left announced they would withdraw support from the UPA Government if it went ahead with the nuclear deal. The Congress badly needed the support of the largest group in the Lok Sabha if the Left carried out its threat.

The ruling party found a ready ally in the Samajwadi Party. The party, led by former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav, needed the Centre's backing to help it cope with the pressure of its arch rival Mayawati-led BSP which had trounced it in the last Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh in 2007.

The SP's growing proximity with the Congress could not go together with its leadership of the United National Progressive Alliance (UNPA) which it founded with six other regional parties like the TDP, AGP, AIADMK and JVM and others, though the AIADMK later left the alliance.

The UNPA, which was projected as a third front by its leader and enjoyed sympathies of the Left, soon found the SP as good as out of the Alliance after it declared its open support to the nuclear deal and decided to vote for the Congress during the confidence motion.

The SP move was termed desertion by remaining UNPA leaders, while the SP dubbed the Alliance a non-entity without it.

The extreme oppposition to the nuclear deal, the growing enmity with Centre shown by the Bahujan Samaj Party, which has 17 MPs, and the fact of its being the largest party in the most populated state of the country has landed Mayawati in the leadership role of the anti-Congress front in the current political situation, a development that could not have been thought of a few months ago.

Political observers feel that the combination of the largest party from Uttar Pradesh with major regional parties was a political development and if it was further consolidated into a formal alliance, it may play a defining role in the coming elections.

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