Lucknow: The Bahujan Samaj Party is rapidly losing its leaders to its one-time ally, the Samajwadi Party. Former BSP minister Ram Prasad Chaudhary, former MP Arvind Chaudhary, former MLAs Doodh Ram, Rajendra Chaudhary and Nandu Chaudhary were among those who joined the Samajwadi Party on Monday, along with a number of zila panchayat members.
Two days ago, senior BSP leader C.L. Verma had joined the SP.
“I gave so much time to the BSP and even contested the Lok Sabha polls. But one fine day I was told that I am being ousted from the party without being giving a reason. On the other hand, we think it is the SP that will now protect the interests of Dalits and Backward Castes and that is why people are coming from BSP to join SP,” he said.
Explaining the shift from BSP to SP, Ram Prasad Chaudhary said, “Mayawati has deviated from the path of Ambedkar and Kanshi Ram. There is no concern left for the poor and the party cadres.”
Samajwadi Parry president Akhilesh Yadav welcomed the BSP leaders and said that this was an indication of changing weather in politics.
“The BJP has betrayed farmers. Uttar Pradesh has become number one in crime and atrocities on women and children have gone up. We gave laptops and BJP has given toilets. The BJP has destroyed the economy with demonetization. They are doing it again with CAA and NRC,” he said.
Akhilesh said that the joining of so many leaders proved that people are yearning for a change now.
Political experts, meanwhile, feel that it is BSP’s lack of initiative of issues like Article 370, CAA and NRC that is positioning the SP as the main opposition against the ruling BJP in Uttar Pradesh.
“Mayawati has not shown any aggression in taking on the BJP, in fact, she is seen to be soft towards the ruling party. Those who like the BJP are moving from BSP to BJP while others are going to SP,” said a senior journalist.
The Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party had joined hands on the eve of the Lok Sabha elections last year but Mayawati snapped the alliance after the general elections, alleging the SP did not transfer its votes to BSP.
The BSP had won ten seats in the Lok Sabha while SP had to remain content with five seats.