New Delhi: The performance of Samajwadi Party in both Lok Sabha seats -- Gorakhpur, Phulpur-- that went to bypolls in Uttar Pradesh has questioned BJP's ability to eclipse the opposition in forthcoming Lok Sabha Polls 2019. The man, sorry the woman, behind the turnaround in Uttar Pradesh politics is none other than Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati.
At a time when the BSP managed to get only 19 assembly seats during Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections 2017, and did not win even a single seat during Lok Sabha elections 2014, many political pundits were ready to write BSP's obituary in Uttar Pradesh. But Mayawati, a past master in social engineering, was waiting to make her presence felt which has stunned BJP. The bypoll results have proved that Mayawati remains a big force in Uttar Pradesh and her ability to transfer votes in favour of an ally can't be questioned.
"We didn't expect that BSP's vote will be transferred to SP in such a manner. We will analyse after seeing the final results and prepare for a situation in future when BSP, SP, and Congress can come together. We will make our strategy for winning 2019 election," said KP Maurya, Deputy Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh.
The fact that Mayawati made her final moves only in the end without hogging unnecessary limelight seems to have caught BJP sleeping.
Mayawati on Thursday--with just one day to go for the campaigning in Gorakhpur and Phulpur parliamentary bypolls-- directed party cadres to hold at least 100
'nukkad sabhas' (street corner meetings) in support of the Samajwadi Party (SP) candidates.
According to media reports Mayawati reportedly instructed a team of BSP leaders, led by her close confidante and Rajya Sabha MP Ashok Siddharth, to personally supervise the campaign. "We have been asked to campaign rigorously as if our own party is contesting," a BSP functionary was reported as saying by The Times of India.
BSP announced the support for SP in the bypolls barely a week before the polling. BJP perhaps failed to take corrective steps to counter BSP's masterstroke. For the first time in nearly 25 years, BSP party workers campaigned with flags of both SP and BSP.
BSP booth-level workers spread in the constituencies and launched door-to-door campaign. No big rally, silent campaign but the results have shocked BJP and given a new hope to the entire Opposition at national level.
The voter turnout was 47.45 per cent in Gorakhpur and 37.39 per cent in Phulpur in Sunday's polling. The bypolls were necessitated after UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya vacated the Gorakhpur and Phulpur Lok Sabha seats