AFTER its debacle in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, where its vote share reduced to a mere 1.9 per cent in Punjab, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is set to hold a ‘massive’ rally at Banga in Nawanshahr district on Friday. The party is touting the rally as the first step towards its revival in the state.
It expects over 1 lakh supporters to attend and workers and leaders have been instructed to ensure that the event is a success. Sources said senior party leaders would not only take up Dalit issues but would also discuss farmer interests and those of government employees who are not being paid salaries on time. Drugs and unemployment would also be core issues at Friday’s rally.
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The party has already announced a candidate for the 2017 Assembly elections from Chabbelwal in Hoshiarpur assembly segment and BSP national general secretary Narinder Kashyap may announce the second candidate from Banga Assembly segment on Friday.
The BSP has lost out since deciding to go it alone in the 2017 assembly polls in Punjab.
It once had a secure base in Doaba region, where around 40 per cent of the voters are from the Dalit community, but in the last year’s Lok Sabha elections, both candidates from Doaba (Jalandhar and Hoshiarpur), lost their security deposits. Since the 1998 Assembly elections, the party’s vote share has been decreasing with every passing election.