BJP schemes to make Mayawati as UP CM
Deccan Herald 15th August 2000
From O P Verma

Sure about its weak position in Uttar Pradesh, BJP has learnt to have decided to offer chief ministership to BSP leader Mayawati so that impending elections to the state Assembly could be fought under her leadership, reliable BJP sources said. Ms Mayawati, who is likely to take over as chief minister either in September-end of early-October, would hold the post for at least three months before going for a snap poll. Elections to the Assembly are due in August next year.

Threatened by the increasing popularity of Samajwadi Party led by Mulayam Singh Yadav and Kranti Dal of Kalyan Singh, the BJP has planned to bring the upper castes and dalits together to counter the two,the sources said, adding the saffron party would contest the polls under the leadership of Ms Mayawati.

As the marriage of convenience between the BJP and BSP gets solemnised under political compulsions, the Loktantrik Congress, now in coalition with BJP is likely to part ways. But it wont affect the BJP-BSP combination as BJP has 175 seats and BSP has 59 seats in the 425-seat Assembly.

To enhance compatibility with Ms Mayawati, Kalraj Mishra is being made the state unit BJP chief who enjoys a good rapport with the BSP leader. As per the understanding the BJP would have deputy chief ministership in the Mayawati ministry, the sources said.

Mr Vajpayee, who is convinced by the general principle of politics that whosoever rules in UP rules the country, is keen to have either a BJP government or a government with BJP partnership in the state. It is at his initiative the BJP leaders like Mr Mishra and Murli Manohar Joshi launched parleys with the BSP leaders keeping in confidence Home Minister L K Advani and party chief Kushabhau Thakre.

The current poll prospects for the BJP are very bleak as the party has suffered political reverses in recent Panchayat and Zila Parishad elections in the state.

Elections to Assemblies of Uttar Pradesh and newly created state of Uttaranchal would be held together. In Uttaranchal there are at present 22 seats, but the new Assembly will have 70 seats after delimitation of constituencies.

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