SP core Muslims and Yadav voters, drifting away from Akhilesh
By: Dheeraj Upadhyay
Lucknow: There has been growing resentment against Akhilesh Yadav’s silence on the Muslim issues, and his one-upmanship in the party. After the loss in Uttar Pradesh state assembly polls, the recent drubbing in the Legislative Council elections has made the situation bad to worse for the Samajwadi Party. Questions are being raised about the top leadership of the party. From social media to workers everywhere, workers are asking for overhauling the organization afresh for 2024 after Akhilesh Yadav's kitchen cabinet and coterie were badly defeated in this election.
The manner in which the BJP has defeated the SP in its stronghold in the MLC elections, it shows that fighting for SP in the 2024 General Elections is going to be tough. Even in the strongholds where the SP did not allow BJP to enter in the recently concluded assembly elections, there also SP faced erosion of votes and loyalty in MLC elections? Be it Azamgarh or Agra, Firozabad, SP has got relatively fewer votes. The biggest dent can be seen in SP's Muslim +Yadav (MY) equation in this election; one of the strongest SP seats in its stronghold Basti-Siddharthnagar where SP got maximum MLA and voters seems that their loyalist Yadav community to is being scattered.
A senior party leader on the promise of anonymity said that we took the MLC election lightly, that's why we lost. Those who had the responsibility of this election were seen enjoying vacations. In many places, the overconfident coterie candidates did not consider it necessary to even meet the voters; they limited themselves to social media only. The way senior leaders distanced themselves from this election is not good augur well for the party’s future. Coalition leaders also did not bother. The attitude and style of Akhilesh Yadav to do politics does not seem that he will create a second line of leadership. Like Azam Khan and Shivpal Yadav used to be in the time of Mulayam Singh. Due to the one-upmanship of Akhilesh, there will always be a shortfall second line of leadership.
Most importantly, it was seen in this election that those who were special and close to the national president also had to face a humiliating defeat. It shows that they don’t command any vote base in public except doing sycophancy to the SP chief. Due to this coterie of SP chief, the party is on the verge of losing the post of Leader of Opposition in Vidhan Parishad. If senior political analysts are to be believed, the BJP will score big in the coming Lok Sabha elections. National elections were fought on national issues where people vote for strong central leadership which BJP possesses will make it more difficult for SP to retain its core voter.
Akhilesh also has a dismal alliance performance due to four consecutive losses after forging alliances with different parties in the state. Now it’s time to rejuvenate the SP cadres by giving opportunities to pro-people leaders rather than to a handful of coterie and confidants.