RLD vice-president Jayant Chaudhary.
RLD vice-president Jayant Chaudhary.

SP now plans to bring RLD into anti-BJP fold in UP

SP chief Akhilesh Yadav meets RLD vice president Jayant Chaudhary to discuss the prospects of RLD becoming part of the alliance

New Delhi: The Samajwadi Party (SP), which has finalized its electoral alliance with the Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), plans to make Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) part of the anti-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) front in Uttar Pradesh.

Former chief minister and SP chief Akhilesh Yadav met RLD vice president Jayant Chaudhary in Lucknow on Wednesday to discuss the prospects of RLD becoming part of the alliance.

“It was a good discussion (on seat-sharing) with Akhilesh and you will know the outcome soon," Chaudhary said after the meeting.

The meeting between the RLD and the SP leaders comes in the wake of the seat-sharing arrangement announced by the SP and the BSP on 12 January. The two parties would contest 38 seats each and leave Amethi and Rae Bareli for the Congress party and two seats for the RLD.

The RLD has demanded at least six Lok Sabha seats mainly in the western Uttar Pradesh region which has a considerable population of Jats, the core voter base of the party. However, some leaders are of the view that they could settle for four Lok Sabha seats.

The RLD is keen to contest Bhagpat, Mathura and Kairana in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

The SP, BSP, and RLD first came together during the Kairana bypolls last year when the three parties had managed to defeat the BJP in a direct contest.

“The three parties have contested together in the past during the Kairana byelections and at present talks are going well. We should be able to make an announcement by the end of the month. The three parties together will give a considerable option to the voters against BJP," said a senior SP leader who is aware of the development.

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