March 7, 2021

Quite Than Becoming a member of Fingers In opposition to BJP, Why are Congress, BSP Desirous to Settle Scores?

With lower than two years to go for the electoral battle of Uttar Pradesh, the political panorama is witnessing an ever-increasing disagreement between Bahujan Samaj Occasion (BSP) chief Mayawati and Congress basic secretary answerable for the state Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. The newest episode was the assault and counterattack between the 2 over the India-China border battle.

So why is that this the case? Why is Mayawati seemingly sharper in her assault on the Congress than the Bharatiya Janata Occasion (BJP), which is in energy each within the state in addition to the Centre? Why do the 2 events in opposition appear wanting to settle scores, somewhat than becoming a member of of their criticism in opposition to the BJP?

The solutions lie within the political realities on the bottom, shifting caste loyalties and desperation to guard the social electoral base or else recapture the misplaced one.


Traditionally in its evolution, the BSP might need been a phenomenon of Dalit political aspirations and social emancipation, nevertheless it progressively moved in direction of the bigger rainbow coalition of Dalits, Muslims and upper-caste Brahmins. It was an experiment that turned well-defined in it’s 2007 meeting election slogan of “Hathi nahi Ganesh hai…Brahma-Vishnu-Mahesh hai”. It was this components that noticed the BSP attain the zenith of its political energy and go on to type a authorities with full majority of its personal.

This Muslim-Dalit-Brahmin (MDB) components was a mirror picture of what had been the Congress’s electoral components for lengthy since India’s independence and proper until late the 1980s when rising Dalit consciousness, backward caste resurgence—the Mandal politics and rising Hindutva— that’s the Kamandal wave, withered it away. Dalits shifted in direction of the BSP, Brahmins largely in direction of the BJP and Muslims tended to facet largely with the backward caste-based Samajwadi Occasion. Nonetheless, in addition they typically regarded in direction of the BSP, of their search of a counter-BJP power.

Dr Prashant Trivedi of Giri Institute of Improvement Research says, “On this mirror picture phenomenon the one distinction between the 2 events was of the management. Whereas within the Congress it was the elite Brahmin or higher caste who led this social mixture, within the BSP it was the Dalit management that was on the high.”

So is the BSP now involved {that a} seemingly extra assertive Congress underneath Priyanka Gandhi Vadra can disturb its caste base in UP? Ought to the Congress’s robust assertion within the case of the Sonbhadra bloodbath, the place Dalit tribals had been killed or most just lately its main intervention on the problem of migrant labourers — a majority of them being from marginalised Dalit background — be seen as its effort to reclaim misplaced floor?

In on the lookout for a solution to this query, it needs to be saved in thoughts that barring UP, the Congress has been in a position to shield its Dalit base in most different states like Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab and Maharashtra, the place the BSP had did not make any severe impression within the greater than 35 years of its existence.

“The BSP chief has robust causes to be involved. In the meanwhile her precedence is to guard her conventional Dalit vote financial institution. If the Congress is ready to do its homework effectively and put together a robust organisation in Uttar Pradesh, it might probably once more be a power to look as much as for the Dalits. The sensation of sharp repulsion to the Congress has been diluted to an extent over the interval of the previous 30 years,” says Dr Trivedi.


Ever because the late 1980s, because the Ram temple motion and aggressive Hindutva politics gained tempo, Muslims in Uttar Pradesh have typically thought-about the SP because the celebration of their first desire. The Muslim-Yadav (MY) issue had been a robust base for the celebration. For Muslims, the BSP had all the time been a topic of doubt. This as a result of the celebration had not been shy of sharing energy with the BJP, 3 times, having shaped a coalition authorities with it, between 1995 and 2000.

Regardless of this, that they had typically regarded in direction of the BSP, for instance in 2007, when its components of social engineering regarded promising in opposition to the BJP, or in numerous Lok Sabha polls wherever it appeared able to defeat the BJP.

Nonetheless, since 2017, the BSP’s tryst with minority politics appears to have been a catastrophe. Regardless of fielding 98 Muslim candidates within the 2017 state polls, the celebration ended up with simply 19 MLAs within the Vidhan Sabha. The allegation was that by fielding so many Muslim candidates, the BSP truly set the desk for the BJP, by helping the latter in communally polarising the elections.

Political observer Professor Sudhir Pawar says, “First the 2017 election technique after which her choice to name off the Mahagathbandhan instantly after the 2019 basic elections haven’t gone down effectively with the minorities. Little question the alliance did not ship the electoral end result as anticipated, nevertheless it was a promising, robust caste mixture of Dalits, Backwards and Muslims that might have gained robust roots and develop into a formidable power in opposition to the BJP within the time to return. Mayawati’s choice to name off the alliance and pin the blame of defeat on the Samajwadi Occasion and its chief Akhilesh Yadav has been largely perceived to be taken underneath the BJP’s strain, and this has alienated the Muslims from the BSP.”

Most likely the BSP absolutely realises this modified political actuality and, subsequently, now has no robust cause to be shrill in opposition to the BJP.


As experiments of social engineering proceed to fail for the BSP because the previous decade, it’s now in all probability resorted to politics of compulsions and combating for survival amid present realities. Senior journalist Brijesh Shukla factors out two components.

He says, “By attacking the Congress and being with the BJP on points starting from triple talaq to Kashmir and now the India-China border dispute, Mayawati appears to have earned reduction on the private entrance. The ED probe within the Rs 1,400 crore memorial rip-off and different issues don’t see a lot warmth.” So when Priyanka Gandhi Vadra not directly hit out at Mayawati by saying “Some opposition leaders are behaving like spokespersons for the BJP”, she was in all probability referring to this lengthy saga of BSP-BJP bonhomie.

The second issue is discovering new political area. The 2017 and 2019 elections have seen the BJP cementing its caste mixture of higher castes, most backwards and non-Jatav Dalits. “With Muslims being alienated, a robust part of the Dalit vote financial institution being misplaced, Mayawati would possibly wish to say what shall be appreciated by this section of voter and can go well with the BJP,” says Shukla. “Therefore extra assault on the Congress”.

Caught amid these various points of the mirror picture phenomenon, the Muslim angle, politics of compulsions and energy to seek out new area, the political disagreement between the BSP and the Congress will solely intensify within the run-up to the meeting polls in 2022