The Congress has decided to leave 11 Lok Sabha seats in western UP for its alliance partners. While one is known partner Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), another is little known political outfit Mahan Dal, which claims its presence among backward castes like Shakyas, Mauryas and Kushwahas. The Congress alliance with Mahan Dal is significant because the BJP was also in touch with the outfit, which has presence among “non-Yadav” and “Non-Lodh” voters in the region.
Satyadev Tripathi, chairman of UPCC communication department, confirmed that eight seats have been left for RLD and three for Mahan Dal. The Congress had entered into an alliance with the RLD before the 2012 UP Assembly elections. Three significant Lok Sabha seats in areas considered strongholds of the Samajwadi Party — Etah, Nagina and Badaun — will be left for Mahan Dal. While Etah is represented by senior BJP leader Kalyan Singh, Badaun and Nagina are
represented by SP’s Dharmendra Yadav and Yashvir Singh, respectively. The eight seats given to RLD include Fatehpur Sikri, Kairana, Baghpat, Bulandshahr, Mathura, Hathras, Bijnore and Amroha.
While the Congress has not fielded any candidates in Mainpuri and Kannauj, represented by SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and daughter-in-law Dimple, sources said the party is watching the SP leadership’s moves regarding Amethi and Rae Bareli, from where Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi will contest.