UTTAR PRADESH BJP state president Keshav Maurya predicts the party will get at least 40 per cent of the Yadav votes this time.
Maurya, who spoke to The Indian Express while in Delhi for the BJP national executive meeting, said Mulayam Singh Yadav’s family should not consider the Yadavs their fiefdom. “Mulayam Singh, Akhilesh aur Shivpal Yadav ko Yadavon ko apni jaagir nahi samajhna chahiye,” he said.
Maurya said the BJP is confident of winning the UP assembly, with the BSP having rapidly lost its support base since 2012 and the Samajwadi Party facing multiple problems due to the ongoing family feud. “We are confident that at least 300 MLAs from the BJP will reach Lucknow this time,” he said.
He said the Samajwadi Party is not a party of Yadavs but one in which everything in the party and government is captured by Saifai’s family. “The BSP chief has done nothing for the improvement of the lives of Dalits and OBCs while the Samajwadi Party has done nothing even for Yadavs,” he said.
But hasn’t ticket distribution by the BJP traditionally shown upper-caste dominance, with very few Muslims and Yadavs fielded on the premise that they don’t vote for the party? “You will see Sabka saath, sabka vikas in the real sense,” he said. “We will follow this motto announced by Modiji at every level. It will reflect in ticket distribution as well.”
Maurya is seen as one of the key contenders for the chief minister’s chair if the BJP comes to power. Asked whether his party should project a chief ministerial candidate, he said it is not the time to discuss the chief ministership when every BJP worker is trying to secure victory for the party. Asked if BJP leaders have promised him the chief minister’s post once the party wins or if the party may instead appoint somebody from the central government, he said, “The decision will be taken by our leaders at the appropriate time.”