Beni Prasad Verma pitches for alliance with BSP in UP

Written by: Pti
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Beni Prasad Verma
New Delhi, Mar 4: Uttar Pradesh is set for a change of government, according to exit polls which have predicted a rout for Chief Minister Mayawati, triggering reactions from political parties with Union Minister and Congress leader Beni Prasad Verma pitching for a post-poll alliance with BSP.

However, neither the predicted winners nor those projected not to be doing well have accepted the exit polls in full with each contesting the findings.

Verma's views have been rejected as personal by Congress leaders including Pramod Tiwari, UP Congress Legislature Party chief, and party General Secretary Rashid Alvi.

Akhilesh Yadav, son of Mulayam Singh Yadav, who is believed to have been the main campaigner in revival of fortunes of SP, expressed confidence that his party will get majority on its own and may not need Congress' support to form a government.

He also said his father would be the chief minister in case the party gets to form the government. He, however, parried questions on seeking support of Congress or Rahul Gandhi in case it falls short of numbers, maintaining that it all depends on the poll results.

The exit polls conducted by TV channels have projected SP in the lead in a hung house while one channel has given Yadav's party a clear majority by predicting that it may get upto 210 seats in an assembly of 403 in UP.

Star News-AC Neilson exit poll showed SP emerging as the single largest party with 183 seats, followed by BSP with 83 seats.

According to it, BJP would win 71 seats, Congress 51 and its ally RLD 11 seats. Independents and others are shown victorious in two seats each.

Headlines Today exit polls showed SP getting between 195 and 210 seats followed by BSP with 88-98 seats. It showed BJP getting 50-56 seats and Cong-RLD combine 38-42. The exit poll showed Independents and others securing 12-18 seats.

India TV-C-Voter exit poll showed SP emerging as the single largest party with 137-145 seats, closely followed by BSP with 122-130 seats. It showed BJP winning 79-87 seats, Congress-RLD winning 39-55 seats and others getting 2-10 seats.

Exit poll by News24 and Today's Chanakya showed SP winning 185 seats with an error margin of 18 seats. They predicted BSP to win 85 seats, BJP 55 and Congress 55. The error margin for the three parties was 15 seats. Others were shown getting 23 seats with an error margin of 17.

Times Now in it 'poll of polls' said while SP will bag 170 seats, BSP will get 98 followed by BJP with 68 and Congress with 55. It has given others 12 seats.

According to the TV polls, Congress is set to have a clear edge in Punjab, Uttarakhand and Manipur while in Goa, one of the channels has predicted an edge to BJP over ruling Congress.

"From the day one, we have stated that we will not support Samajwadi Party. We have had a very bad experience in 2002. Why should we do it again?," asked Congress leader Digvajay Singh said.

His party colleague Beni Prasad Verma said, "Personally, I prefer BSP in comparison to SP. Mayawati has controlled lawlessness from Kanpur to Etah." He maintained that the views expressed by him were personal.

He maintained that if no alliance in UP succeeded, then he would advocate revoting or imposition of central rule.

Attacking SP, Digvijay Singh said, "People of UP have not forgotten what they suffered in 2002-2007 (during SP rule)."

Asked if Rahul Gandhi should take the blame for Congress' showing based on the exit polls, the Congress General Secretary said, "Leadership can create a way and enthusiasm. It is the organisation which has to convert them into votes."


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