Kushwahas' induction creates divide in party

Their entry in SP to cost party dear in polls, say partymen

The Samajwadi Party may have inducted the scam tainted former Bahujan Samaj Party leader Babu Singh Kushwaha’s family into the party to expand its support base among the Other Backward Classes, political observers and even many SP leaders feel that it may cost the party dear in the Lok Sabha polls.

Kushwaha had joined the Bharatiya Jajata Party on the eve of the last year’s Assembly polls in the state. Though his membership was later put on hold following huge protests within the saffron party, he had addressed dozens of rallies especially in areas where his community voters were in sizable numbers.

Yet the BJP failed to get the support of the community and its tally of seats went down further.

Although the exact percentage of Kushwaha community voters in the state is not known, according to sources, it could be around three to four per cent of the total electorate. They are in sizable numbers in some pockets in eastern UP, especially in Ghazipur, Azamgarh, Ballia, Deoria, Kushinagar and some other districts.

“Babu Singh Kushwaha may not be able to fetch his own community’s votes for the SP. Besides he is currently lodged in jail,” said a senior SP leader while speaking to Deccan Herald here.

“Kushwaha is going to be a liability. We cannot hide behind the argument that his wife and brother cannot be called to be corrupt. After all it is Kushwaha’s family,” the leader went on to add.

The SP leaders feel that the entry of the Kushwaha family has dented the image of chief minister Akhilesh Yadav. Akhilesh had made corruption during the Mayawati regime an election plank in last the Assembly polls. “He cannot do so any longer,” the leader quipped.

Besides the observers say that the induction has come at a time when the SP government is already under attack from different quarters for deteriorating law and order situation in the state.

The reports that SP may nominate Kushwaha’s wife Shiv Kanya from Ghazipur Lok Sabha seat replacing its candidate, whose name had been announced earlier, may cause further resentment in the party, sources said.

There already is widespread resentment over recurring changes in the list of party nominees for the Lok Sabha elections.

SP’s move draws flak from Mayawati

Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati on Sunday said her party would stick to its demand for President’s rule in the state even as she slammed the ruling Samajwadi Party for inducting into its fold the kin of a tainted former BSP minister, reports PTI from Lucknow.

“Our party did not spare even old workers or ministers whenever corruption was detected and they were expelled from the party, besides having a high-level inquiry held against them,” Mayawati told reporters here.

The BSP supremo said SP was not bothered about the allegations of corruption against Kushwaha.

“Instead, SP is concerned about its personal interest,” she alleged, adding that with such people as its members, corruption could never end in SP government.

Mayawati said in April, BSP had submitted a memorandum to the governor requesting him to recommend President’s rule in the state. “No concrete step was taken in this direction and we repeat our demand to the governor,” she said.

“In the interest of the people the party will continue to repeat the demand till the time it is accepted,” she said.

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