Jolt to Mayawati? 9 BSP rebel MLAs meet Akhilesh Yadav, may join SP
New Delhi, June 15: In a major setback for Mahayawati ahead of Uttar Pradesh assembly polls, nine Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) MLAs have reportedly met with Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav. Reports say the rebel MLA's may switch over to the rival party.
"The meeting with SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, which lasted for 15-20 minutes, witnessed discussions on the upcoming UP Assembly elections, and it was a nice meeting," Sushma Patel, MLA from Mungra Badshahpur assembly constituency in Jaunpur district told PTI.
When asked about the future course of action, Patel said, "Personally, I have made up my mind to join the Samajwadi Party."
The development comes days after Mayawati urged urged party workers to expand its base to improve the party's poll prospect in the next year's assembly elections.
Seeking to reorient the party's image, she told party leaders and workers to remember that the Bahujan Samaj Party is a "sarv samaj" party, committed to achieving the objective of "Sarv Jan hitay, Sarv Jan sukhay" (serving interests of all, ensuring the welfare of all).
Mayawati gave the directions in a meeting held here to examine the party's preparedness for the next year's assembly elections.
Cautioning party men against leaders who give more importance to their personal interests than those of the party, she said the party men should have more trust in the cadre than such leaders who are more interested in serving their own interests while pledging by names of Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar and Kanshi Ram.
The BSP president recently expelled two senior leaders, including the BSP's legislature party leader Lalji Verma and its former state unit president Ram Achal Rajbhar for anti-party activities during the panchayat elections.
With the move, the BSP which once had more than 200 members is now reduced to almost a 'non-entity'. There are 18 BSP MLAs in the 403-member Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly. This is due to large-scale desertion and expulsion of leaders by party supremo Mayawati within a span of 10 years.
While the BJP has been the biggest gainer, SP has also admitted several senior BSP leaders in its ranks.