Updated: April 8, 2017 8:04:42 pm
The Republican Party of India (A) will take the space of Mayawati’s BSP which fared very badly in the recent Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, its president and Union Minister Ramdas Athawale today said.
“Dalit voters also have their contribution in the BJP’s landslide victory in UP. BSP chief Mayawati had thought that she will form a government but she will not come to power for the next 10 to 20 years,” he told reporters here.
Stressing on strengthening his party, he said “RPI(A) will try to take the space of the BSP in the state…not a single person of the BSP was elected to the Lok Sabha…only 19 MLAs were elected in the recent Assembly polls, reflecting a massive slide in its support base.”
“BSP workers are gradually joining RPI now,” he said. Noting that the BJP got the support of people who favoured the pro-poor policies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Minister for Social Justice said “I have full confidence that Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will fulfil the promises made by Modiji.
“UP will become ‘uttam pradesh’ under Yogi Adityanath. There is no need for anyone to fear. Yogiji will move forward taking people of all religions along,” he said.
RPI(A) had fielded candidates in around 60 of the 403 Assembly constituencies, with Athawale saying that the intention was “to help the BJP in the long run” by splitting Dalit votes.
“RPI has the support of Dalit voters if my candidates cut BSP votes, then it will help BJP,” he had said during campaigning in UP.
RPI contesting the polls will not affect the winning prospects of the BJP candidates, he said, adding “RPI will support BJP and I will campaign for BJP candidates on seats from where RPI is not contesting…While I do not want to damage BJP votebank, I want RPI to grow in UP.”
During his interaction with reporters today, the RPI president said that he will try that big business houses of Mumbai like those headed by Mukesh Ambani, Anil Ambani, Ratan Tata, Godrej, Bajaj and Kirlosker invest in UP.
“I will try and help in Yogi’s efforts to realise the dreams of Modi,” he added.
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