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Mayawati Firms up Alliance With Ajit Jogi's Party in Chhattisgarh, Congress Says Will Go it Alone

Mayawati Firms up Alliance With Ajit Jogi's Party in Chhattisgarh, Congress Says Will Go it Alone

BSP chief had last week indicated her party will have alliance only if offered a respectable number of seats.

New Delhi: In a setback to the Congress's efforts to build a nation wide alliance against the BJP, BSP chief Mayawati has decided to tie up with Ajit Jogi's Janta Congress Chhattisgarh in the upcoming Chhattisgarh elections.

The BSP also said that if their alliance comes to power, Ajit Jogi will be the CM.

“The Bahujan Samaj Party has decided to contest upcoming assembly polls in alliance with Janta Congress Chhattisgarh. The BSP will fight on 35 seats and Janata Congress Chhattisgarh will contest on 55 seats. If we win, Ajit Jogi will be the CM,” said BSP chief Mayawati.

Mayawati also said that the BSP will ally with only those parties which are ready to allocate respectable seats for her party.

"The alliance partner should also be working for the upliftment of Dalits and advivasis," said Mayawati.

Ajit Jogi alleged that the BJP will try to use the state machinery to make things difficult for the opposition, but expressed hope that the alliance with the BSP will help stop the BJP march.

"The BJP has been in power in Chhattisgarh for the past 15 years. They want to come back to power by misusing the state machinery and the money power that they have. Now that we have an alliance with the BSP, Mayawati and our party will be able to stop them," said Ajit Jogi.

Downplaying the BSP tie up with Ajit Jogi's party, the Congress claimed that it will form the government in the state on its own.

"We had received a proposal from the BSP for an alliance. The Congress will fight the elections independently and form the government in the state," said Congress General Secretary and Chhattisgarh in-charge PL Punia.

In Chhattisgarh, Dalits are around 11.6% of the population.

The BJP, led by Raman Singh, has been in power in the state for 15 years.

The BSP has also released a list of 22 candidates in Madhya Pradesh where the talks for a tie up with the Congress have been going on for a while now.

The BSP of yesteryears was not in favour of forming alliances with other political parties, rather it relied on social arithmetic of castes and communities.

The BSP seems to have reworked its strategy.

In Karnataka, it tied up with the JD(S), and in Uttar Pradesh, surprising critics, the party forged an understanding with its arch-rival Samajawadi Party.

The party is looking to expand its base and forging alliances seems to be the way forward.

first published:September 20, 2018, 17:58 IST