BSP ups efforts to win back rebels ahead of RS polls
Lucknow, Mar 21: The Bahujan Samaj Party has stepped up efforts to win back rebel MLAs ahead of the crucial Rajya Sabha biennial polls to 10 seats in Uttar Pradesh.
The polls are slated for March 28 with 13 candidates in fray.
Winning back 33 defector MLAs is important for BSP's plan of ensuring victory of party nominees in the Rajya Sabha and Legislative Council polls. Following Assembly Speaker's decision to give his ruling on BSP defectors' case on March 24, Mayawati plans to go all out to woo these defectors.
MLAs and prominent party leaders, who had gone to New Delhi to attend party founder Kashiram's birthday, claimed MLAs were directed to rush to their constituencies and return to the state capital at the time of Rajya Sabha poll.
The party leadership apprehends the Speaker's verdict could harm BSP's prospect. On the contrary, any revolt by defectors against the ruling party would kick up a fresh controversy which would suit the BSP.
Ms Mayawati would use the Speaker's ruling to whip up a campaign against the Mulayam Singh Yadav government. In such a scenario losing one of the three seats in the Rajya Sabha poll would be politically beneficial for the BSP supremo.
In the existing scenario, the BSP would find it hard to send even two of its nominees to the Rajya Sabha, if defectors are not considered party members. For victory, a contestant would require 37 votes, which would be a distant dream for the party that has only 67 MLAs.
Chairman of the Lok Janshakti Party, Ranjan Prasad Yadav, had met a few BSP leaders in New Delhi recently to ensure that the party did not join hands with Lalu Prasad Yadav in Bihar Rajya Sabha poll.
Sources, however, said that UP was the first priority for Mayawati and tie-ups in other states would be done keeping the state in mind.
With none of the 13 candidates for 10 Rajya Sabha and 14 candidates for 13 Legislative Council seats withdrawing nominations, Uttar Pradesh is set to witness a keen contest in the elections.
Altogether 13 candidates had filed nominations for the 10 RS seats in UP to biennial polls.
In case of LC, nomination of Independent candidate Pradip Singh was rejected for not complying with Articles 3 and 36 of the Representation of People of India (RPI) Act. With this, 14 candidates are in fray for 13 seats.