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Split in SP-BSP alliance? Mayawati may go solo in UP assembly bypolls


New Delhi, June 03: BSP chief Mayawati on Monday raised doubts over the future of the SP-BSP-RLD 'gathbandhan (alliance)' whem she reportedly asked her party workers to be prepared to contest on their own in the upcoming bye-elections in Uttar Pradesh.

File photo of Mayawati Akhilesh Yadav

At a meeting of the Bahujan Samaj Party's Uttar Pradesh unit here, she also asked the office bearers, MLAS and newly-elected MPs to be prepared to contest the assembly by-elections on their own, PTI sources aware of the development said here.

The development comes after Mayawati had removed election coordinators of six states and two state presidents on Sunday, following the poor show in the Lok Sabha elections.

A total of 11 assembly bypolls are due in UP after MLAs won the Lok Sabha polls. Her remarks, sources said, are significant as the BSP does not usually contest bypolls. Nine BJP MLAs won the Lok Sabha elections, while one each from BSP and SP were elected to the lower house.

She told the gathering at the party headquarters here that the BSP won 10 seats in Uttar Pradesh due to BSP's traditional votebank and the votes of Samajwadi Party could not get transferred to its candidates.

She cited poor performance of its alliances in various states during assembly and Lok Sabha elections to drive home the point that the BSP will have to strengthen its own organisational structure and not to depend on other parties to win votes.

The former Uttar Pradesh chief minister also pressed for the need to increase the involvement of members of other backward classes in the party organisation.

The BJP, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, won 303 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha, more than enough to return to power.

Even in Uttar Pradesh, the BJP won 62 of 80 parliamentary seats, nine seats less than 2014, and its Apna Dal ally won two seats. The gathbandhan's tally settled at 15.

The vote share of both parties (combined) dropped from 42.2% (2014) to 37.3%. Both SP and BSP had expected that the vote shares put together will help them win big but they failed.

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