The Samajwadi Party and the Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohia) indicated Friday that there would not be any problem over seat sharing for the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections with the leader of the smaller outfit saying he was ready for any "sacrifice".
SP chief Akhilesh Yadav had on Thursday announced an alliance with his uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav's PSPL after a meeting between them. On Friday, the elder Yadav held a meeting of his party workers, recalling that he had already told them that in case of an alliance their party may get fewer seats from which to contest. “We will fight the elections together and if needed we will also make sacrifices for it. The BJP government has to be removed and we will form the government together,” he told them.
In an interaction with media persons, Akhilesh Yadav too indicated that seat sharing will not be a problem, and has been “almost decided”. He said this time the SP has announced alliances only after deliberating on seat sharing, he said. "People are ready to remove the BJP from power and are seeing SP as an alternative," he said.
The SP decided to bring Shivpal Yadav's party into the alliance while working towards bringing regional parties in UP together, he said. Before the "chacha-bhatija" reunion, Shivpal Yadav had said his breakaway party was preparing to field candidates on 100 seats in the elections to the 403-member assembly. The coming together of the family appears to have enthused workers in both the parties.
Hundreds of supporters from the two parties had on Thursday gathered outside Shivpal Yadav’s house, chanting "Chacha-Bhatija Zindabad". Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav was present at Shivpal Yadav’s house before Akhilesh Yadav reached there for Thursday’s meeting, SP sources said. The relations between the uncle and the nephew went sour in 2016 with the sacking of Shivpal Yadav as a minister by Akhilesh Yadav when he was chief minister.
Akhilesh Yadav became the SP president in January 2017 and his uncle formed his own party in 2018. During the panchayat polls held a few months back, the SP and the PSPL had come together in Etawah, where they won 18 out of 24 wards and BJP got just one seat there. The reunion could also help in checking any erosion in their support among the Yadavs, who are said to be around 9 percent of the state’s population.
Aggressively positioning himself against the BJP in the 2022 UP polls, the SP has already entered into an alliance with the Rashtriya Lok Dal and Om Prakash Rajbhar's Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party (SBSP).
-With PTI Inputs