Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Congress & Samajwadi Party Forge Alliance In Uttar Pradesh Amidst Mixed Signals

Lucknow: In a significant turn of events ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, the Congress and the Samajwadi Party (SP) have entered an alliance in Uttar Pradesh. This alliance, announced by Akhilesh Yadav, aims to counter the BJP’s stronghold in the state.

Akhilesh Yadav, the leader of the Samajwadi Party, took to the social media platform ‘X’ to announce the initiation of a promising alliance with Congress on 11 seats. He did not clarify the seats given to Congress.

But Yadav expressed optimism, saying: “Our cordial alliance with Congress is off to a good start with 11 strong seats. This trend will move forward with the winning equation. The ‘India’ team and the ‘PDA’ strategy will change history.”

However, the Congress has not yet officially endorsed this agreement. UP Congress committee president Ajay Rai clarified that the decision on seat-sharing would be made by the Mukul Wasnik committee, asserting that the current announcement by Yadav is not binding on the Congress.

The Congress is asking for 21 seats.

Adding to the complexity, the Samajwadi Party hinted that the 11-seat pact is merely an initial assessment and discussions are ongoing, suggesting the possibility of an increase in the number of seats

“The 11-seat pact is just the beginning. We are in discussions and more seats could be added,” said SP spokesman Rajendra Chaudhry.

SP Chief Blames Congress For Fissures Within INDIA Bloc

On Friday, Akhilesh Yadav blamed the Congress for the ongoing fissures within the INDIA bloc. He said that the enthusiasm the party needed to show in discussing and engaging with alliance partners was not visible.

“Congress should have come forward. The enthusiasm that Congress needed to show in discussing and engaging with the INDIA alliance was missing,” the former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister noted.

SP Announces Tie-Up With RLD

The seat-sharing negotiations in Uttar Pradesh are pivotal for the INDIA block parties, aiming to challenge the BJP collectively in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Recently, Akhilesh Yadav also announced a seat-sharing arrangement with Jayant Chaudhary’s Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), on seven seats, further consolidating their position.

With Uttar Pradesh holding the largest number of Lok Sabha seats, the ruling BJP and the opposition recognise its strategic significance. While the BJP has shown strength in the state in previous elections, the opposition parties are banking on alliances to consolidate anti-BJP votes and mount a credible challenge.

“As the political landscape continues to evolve, the dynamics within the INDIA alliance and the upcoming seat-sharing decisions will undoubtedly shape the narrative leading up to the elections, slated for April-May this year, Nomita P Kumar of Giri Institute of Development Studies in Lucknow said.

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