SP- BSP ties may cost NDA 25- 30 seats: Athawale
Minister invites Maya to join NDA
Union minister Ramdas Athawale has said that if the SP- BSP alliance continued till the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, it might cost the BJP- led NDA about 25 to 30 seats.
“The SP- BSP may damage the BJP and its allies by winning some 25- 30 ( Lok Sabha) seats. But, the BJP will still get more than 50 seats,” he said.
However, he maintained that there was no challenge to the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Talking to reporters here on Friday, Mr Athawale invited BSP president Mayawati to join the NDA if she was genuinely interested in the empowerment of dalits.
“If the BSP joins us, we will win all the 80 Lok Sabha seats in UP. The Samajwadi Party is betraying the BSP, as it did in the recent Rajya Sabha elections, and the welfare of dalits could be guaranteed only in the NDA,” he asserted.
The minister, who heads the Republican Party of India ( A), added, “No one can challenge Prime Minister Narendra Modi — neither Congress president Rahul Gandhi, nor SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, nor BSP supremo Mayawati.”
The BJP and its allies had won 73 out of 80 Lok Sabha seats in UP in 2019
If the BSP joins us, we will win all the 80 Lok Sabha seats in UP. The SP is betraying the BSP... The welfare of dalits could be guaranteed only in the NDA. — Ramdas Athawale,
and BJP president Amit Shah has already said that his party was working towards winning all 80 seats this time.
In 2014, the Congress had won two seats, while the Samajwadi Party had won five seats which increased to seven after SP victory in two Lok Sabha byelections in Gorakhpur and Phulpur.
The BSP did not win even a single seat in 2014.
Lauding the work done by BJP governments, Mr Athawale said that there had been attacks on dalits in the name of “gau raksha” but CM Yogi Adityanath had taken effective steps to control the situation.
Replying to a question, the minister said that inclusion of “Ramji” in the name of Dr B. R. Ambedkar was a welcome step and thanked UP governor Ram Naik and CM Yogi Adityanath for the decision.