Prasenjit Das, Editor in Chief India –
A day after Congress was dumped with a snub by ‘mercurial’ Mayawati, party’s Madhya Pradesh chief Kamal Nath on Thursday set the record straight, saying, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP)’s irrational demand of seats for the year-end Assembly polls in MP had caused the alliance talks between them to fall through.
Elaborating his point, Mr Nath said Ms Mayawati had sought the seats where her party has hardly any presence whereas she wanted Congress to field candidates in some other constituencies, considered BSP stronghold.
“BSP’s demand of its share of seats during alliance talks was beyond my comprehension. Neither BSP nor Congress would have won in these seats. The ultimate gainer would have been BJP,” said Mr Nath.
Mr Nath also described the demand of 50 seats by BSP as too high to meet by his party. He, however, put up a brave front saying that BSP’s decision not to have poll understanding with Congress in the year-end Assembly elections in MP was not a setback for his party.
“The groundswell of support for Congress in MP is phenomenal,” he claimed. Apparently trying to woo the BSP workers, he quipped, “Even the smallest BSP worker will understand its implications and vote accordingly”.
Mr Nath, who was handling the botched alliance talks with BSP supremo, however still appeared optimistic that Ms Mayawati would join the Congress-led ‘Mahaga-thbandhan’ or grand alliance to defeat BJP in 2019 parliamentary polls.
He also dismissed charges by Ms Mayawati that AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh’s machinations led to failure of alliance talks, saying, “It is not right to blame Mr Singh”.
Asked if Mr Singh’s attack on Ms Mayawati for not entering electoral understanding with Congress a few days ago had led to failure of alliance talks, Mr Nath said, “I will talk to Mr Singh what he had said”.
Mr Singh had earlier reportedly said Ms Mayawati was under pressure of CBI not to go for poll tie up with Congress in Madhya Pradesh.
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(Spot # 14)