Sitting below a banner where B R Ambedkar and ‘Jai Bhim’ shared space with Ram Manohar Lohia and ‘Jai Samajwad’, BSP chief Mayawati and Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday announced their alliance for the coming Lok Sabha elections. The two parties would contest 38 seats each in Uttar Pradesh, leaving the two Congress bastions of Rae Bareli and Amethi, and keeping two seats aside for any future allies.
The alliance was the “rajnaitik kranti (political revolution) of 2019”, Mayawati said at a joint press conference, adding that it would cause the “guru-chela”, in a reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah, to “lose sleep”. She also said the tie-up was “permanent” and would continue for the Assembly elections. Akhilesh, who read out from a paper instead of speaking extempore as he normally does, said he had been ready to take the back seat for the sake of the alliance, but that “Behenji” had given him equal space.