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Mayawati’s BSP in demand as parties seek alliance after UP bypolls win

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is much in demand this poll season, with several leaders making a beeline for an electoral understanding with Mayawati’s party.

The rush is triggered by the stunning victory of the Samajwadi Party (SP)-BSP coalition in last month’s by-elections in Gorakhpur and Phulpur, the constituencies represented by Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath and his deputy Keshav Prasad Maurya respectively.

On Wednesday, the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) announced its alliance with the BSP for next year’s assembly elections in Haryana. The two parties will also have a tie-up in Rajasthan, where elections are due in November this year.

In the 2014 assembly elections in Haryana, the BSP had secured a vote share of 4.37%, winning one of the 87 seats it contested. On the other hand, the INLD had won 19 of the total 90 seats and bagged a vote share of 24.11%. According to the 2011 census, Dalits constitute roughly 20% of Haryana’s total 25 million population.