Ahead of the Uttar Pradesh polls the political parties have now shifted to the virtual mode but missing in action is Mayawati. The BSP supremo has not started her campaign but all the other political parties are active including the BJP with Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressing several rallies.
Mayawati’s inaction has led to some serious contenders throwing their hat into the ring for the Dalit votes, especially the Jatavs who have been with the Bahujan Samaj Party and did not desert during the bad times. But the silence of the BSP on core issues has led to suspicions in the minds of its leaders and almost all the big leaders including the legislative party leader have left the party and joined the Samajwadi Party.
But the BSP seems unfazed with the exit of its leaders and except for Satish Chandra Mishra no other leader is seen at its forefront. The Congress has termed it as the “B team” of the Bharatiya Janata Party while SP leader Akhilesh Yadav has refrained from attacking the BSP leader but has inducted all the BSP turncoats into his party.
The four time Chief Minister of UP has been active only on Twitter. She sometimes issues a press note. A day before she tweeted about the PM’s security breach and criticized the Punjab government where her party is contesting elections in alliance with the Akali Dal.
In her absence most of the BSP leaders are joining the SP and mostly Brahmins are choosing it over the BJP. Former Bahujan Samaj Party MP Rakesh Pandey — father of BSP leader in the Lok Sabha, Ritesh Pandey — joined the Samajwadi Party on Monday along with his supporters. Earlier, Kushal Tiwari, a former BSP MP and son of Harishankar Tiwari, joined the SP with his whole clan.
Bahujan Samaj Party leaders say that the party has finalized candidates for a majority of the seats and the names of the selected candidates are being announced in meetings organised by the party leaders in various districts.
The BSP president has been accused of staying away from the political arena and has been limiting her activities to press statements and tweets. Party national general secretary Satish Chandra Mishra has refuted this and said, “The BJP, SP and Congress are luring leaders with tickets for the assembly elections.”
Mishra said that the BSP was working on the social engineering formula of ‘sarvajan hitaye – sarvajan sukhaye’ to win the elections. Members of all communities were being given adequate representation in the distribution of tickets.
The BSP had managed to win only 19 seats in the 2017 assembly polls and is now left with merely six legislators since the others have either left or have been expelled.