Mayawati's split card heats up UP poll scene

=The proposal to split the state into four is likely to heat up the ‘electoral scene’ with next assembly polls barely months away. The BSP supremo, however, fully realises that splitting the state into four parts–Harit Pradesh comprising districts of western region, Poorvanchal with districts of eastern UP, Bundelkhand and central parts —was not an easy proposition. But, with elections round the corner, political parties would not like to rub the electorate the wrong way in the respective divisions, fearing a backlash.

Barring the Samajwadi Party (SP), which has always unequivocally opposed any further division of UP, the other two major players, Congress and the BJP have chosen to tread cautiously. While the Congress is wary that its support to the idea could weaken its stand on Telangana, the BJP did not want to let Mayawati gain political mileage out of the issue and has said that nothing should be done ‘in haste’.

Congress leaders, however, demanded formation of a State Reorganisation Commission to look into the matter. BJP said that Mayawati wanted to divert the attention of the people from her failure and, thus, has floated the idea.

Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) chief Ajit Singh, whose party is strong in the western region, has been demanding a separate state of Harit Pradesh, while Lok Manch chief and former SP leader Amar Singh has been demanding a Poorvanchal state. It is not yet clear if Mayawati would be able to reap political dividends by advocating the split. “BSP is not very strong in western and central parts of the state. It may gain there besides strengthening itself in the eastern part and Bundelkhand region,” said a BSP leader.

While the split of the largest state of the country may not become a reality in the near future, if Mayawati takes any concrete step in this direction, she may stoke the ‘ambition’ of the people in those areas. Whether she will gain electorally in the process would be known only after the polls.

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