Buoyed by the bypolls results to both the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections, BSP supremo Mayawati has started preparations for next year’s general elections. If media reports are to go by, the BSP chief may contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. A report by News 18 said that the former Uttar Pradesh CM will probably enter the poll fray from the Ambedkar Nagar constituency.
Ambedkar Nagar constituency came into existence in 2008 and is considered a stronghold of the BSP. Mayawati had in 2004 polls emerged victorious from Akbarpur seat of which Ambedkar Nagar was a part, but she had to vacate her office in 2007 to become the CM of Uttar Pradesh. In the bypoll, the Samajwadi Party had wrested the seat. But in 2009 again, BSP’s Rakesh Pandey won from Ambedkar Nagar. In the previous general elections, BJP’s Hari Om Pandey had defeated Rakesh Pandey by over 2 lakh votes.
Before the 2004 elections, Mayawati had represented the Akbarpur seat twice (1998 and 1999) in the Lower House. Interestingly, Mayawati had also represented Bijnor seat in the Lok Sabha in the initial days of her political career. But after assuming the office of BSP’s president post, Mayawati opted not to contest elections.
In 2007 when the BSP gained majority in the UP Assembly, she took the membership of the Council to become the CM. In 2012, she was made a Rajya Sabha MP. She quit her membership last year.
According to media reports, Mayawati was mulling over contesting elections in order to galvanize the party cadres and send a strong message that the BSP is ready to take on the BJP. There are 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh but in the 2014 polls, the BSP had failed to open its account.
A report in News18 said that the job to identify a suitable seat for the BSP supremo is already underway and Ambedkar Nagar and Bijnor Lok Sabha seats have been zeroed in on.
The 2019 elections are crucial for the BSP and its bid to revitalise the party which has suffered defeats in 2012 assembly polls, 2014 general elections and 2017 assembly polls. In such a situation, if Mayawati decides to contest elections, it will surely provide a boost to the morale of the party workers.