The mandate this year could not have come at a worse time for BSP and Ms Mayawati as the party's strength in the Lok Sabha in 2014 was already reduced to zero. The vote-share during parliamentary polls for the party founded by the Late Kanshi Ram was however 19.60 per cent. Ms Mayawati is generally credited for giving a better law and order situation in the governance-starved UP under her from 2007 to 2012, when she lost power to the Samajwadi Party. The alleged frivolous spending by her on statues were once a major poll issue for Samajwadi Party and also the BJP.
The BJP leaders now say the Uttar Pradesh mandate this year ensuring a nosedive decline for regional leaders like Akhilesh Yadav and decimation for Ms Maywati have shown yet again what people think of the 'Netas' often resorting to ivory tower style of functioning and their secretarian and casteist approaches. "The message from the mandate is that the faceless Indian voters should not be taken for granted, more so if your over ambitions do not match your performance and stature," UP BJP leader Jagdambika Pal told UNI.
The importance of Ms Mayawati in UP politics could not be underestimated even hours before the results came in when both the Samajwadi Party and the Congress indicated that despite political differences they were willing to do business with the BSP chief. Congress spokesperson Abhishekh Manu Singhvi yesterday said, "We are confident of forming Government with our alliance partner Samajwadi Party but if the mandate throws a hung situation (Assembly), nature and politics cannot be left in vacuum." The Congress is not against exploring possibility of any post-poll "easily available handshake," the Congress leader has said. (UNI)