By Pradeep Kapoor
LUCKNOW: BJP is desperate to win Mainpuri Lok Sabha by-election to make significant dent in what is known as yadavland to demoralise Samajwadi Party before crucial 2024 Lok Sabha polls. It would be worth mentioning here the Mainpuri by-election is taking place on December 5 following demise of sitting MP and founder of Samajwadi Party Mulayam Singh Yadav.
Significantly Samajwadi Party national President Akhilesh Yadav has fielded his wife Dimple Yadav to carry forward the legacy of Mulayam Singh Yadav family and take the advantage of sympathy factor.
BJP as a part of its big strategy fielded Raghuraj Shakya, close associate of Shival Pal Yadav, younger brother of Mulayam Singh Yadav and uncle of Shivpal Yadav. Raghraj Shakya had been twice MP from Itawa thanks to total support of his mentor Shivpal Yadav.
Raghuraj Shakya had been in Samajwadi Party all through but joined Shivpal Yadav when he formed Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party but just before 2022 assembly polls he joined BJP. In order to confuse the voters and gain sympathy votes, BJP candidate Raghuraj Shakya visited samadhi of Mulayam Singh Yadav before filing his nomination..
During last Lok Sabha polls, BJP candidate Prem Singh Shakya managed good number of votes against powerful Mulayam Singh Yadav and was defeated by a margin of 90,000 votes. Knowing the influence of Shakya community in this region, Akhilesh Yadav also appointed former MLA Alok Shakya as district party President few days before Dimple Yadav filed her nomination.
Akhilesh Yadav also met his uncle Shivpal Yadav and declared him as one of the star campaigners for Dimple Yadav for Mainpuri polls. Taking the election seriously, BJP has mobilized a large number of workers from the frontal organisations of the Sangh Parivar.
Mainpuri constituency has 17 lakh voters and main chunk of four lakh yadavs and 80,000 Muslims and two lakhs shakya. The presence of 1.5 lakh dalit votes in this constituency will be crucial in absence of BSP. It is very difficult to predict which party will be getting the dalit votes.
Significantly Congress has also not fielded any candidate in this crucial by-election but traditional voters are likely to support Samajwadi Party! Akhilesh Yadav is in touch with all those parties determined to defeat BJP to support Samajwadi Party candidate Dimple Yadav.
On the other hand, BJP is banking on achievements of state as well as central government to win over the voters and support from those voters who traditionally support saffron Party’s ideology of Hindutva.
Whatever may be result of Mainpuri bypoll, it would certainly impact the preparations of BJP and Samajwadi Party for 2024 Lok Sabha polls especially the leadership of Akhilesh Yadav. (IPA Service)