Join hands in 2019, first support in state polls: SP to Congress

Join hands in 2019, first support in state polls: SP to Congress

Courtesy : NJ TEAM25/07/2018 09:08

Although AICC President Rahul Gandhi is confident of striking an alliance with the Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh for 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the latter has said it will be renewed only after Congress agrees for the same in the forthcoming assembly polls in Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh and Rajasthan.

The two parties had an alliance in Uttar Pradesh in the 2017 Assembly polls. But after its debacle, the Congress had snapped ties with the SP and had contested the by-polls on its own, barring the by-poll for the Kairana Lok Sabha seat, where it had not fielded a candidate to support the joint opposition nominee from the RLD.

A day after the AICC President was authorised by the party to take decisions on alliances, Rahul Gandhi expressed confidence of renewing the alliance with the SP in UP. But the SP seems to not be in the mood to oblige so easily without a bargain.

 SP Chief Akhilesh Yadav was miffed at the Congress breaking the tie-up after the 2017 Assembly poll debacle and fielding candidates against SP candidates supported by the BSP in Lok Sabha by-polls in Gorakhpur and Phulpur. But Yadav always maintained that his friendship with Rahul Gandhi will continue despite Congress opting out of the alliance.

Senior party leaders claimed that in the changing political situation, Congress will have to reciprocate in the same manner in MP, Chattisgarh and Rajasthan, if it wants to renew its alliance with SP.

"Our party President has advocated to bring in all non-BJP parties under one platform to form a 'mahagathbandhan' but it should not be restricted to UP and should go beyond the state at the national level if the Congress is serious about stopping BJP's return to power in 2019," said a party MLC.

The MLC said that it was Yadav who broke the ice with the BSP and made efforts to bring smaller parties together to wrest the prestigious Gorakhpur and Phulpur Lok Sabha seats from the BJP and ensured the victory of the RLD candidate in RLD.

He pointed that the Congress should realise that only a united opposition at the national level will be able to check Narendra Modi returning to power in 2019. "Both, BSP and the SP have a support base in MP, Chattisgarh and Rajasthan and if they contest together, the joint opposition will certainly wrest these states from the BJP prior to the crucial LS polls," he said.

BSP supremo Mayawati is also of the same view that the Congress should have seat-sharing in the three states if it wants to be included in the BSP-SP alliance. With SP's rider, Mayawati hopes to expand their alliance beyond UP.

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Senior party leaders claimed that in the changing political situation, Congress will have to reciprocate in the same manner in MP, Chattisgarh and Rajasthan, if it wants to renew its alliance with SP. BSP supremo Mayawati is also of the view that the Congress should have seat-sharing in the three states if it wants to be included in the BSP-SP alliance

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