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Amid seat-sharing talks with Congress, Akhilesh Yadav names 16 candidates of Samajwadi Party
Akhilesh Yadav
Photo courtesy: Facebook/Akhilesh Yadav

Amid seat-sharing talks with Congress, Akhilesh Yadav names 16 candidates of Samajwadi Party

| @indiablooms | 30 Jan 2024, 09:25 pm

New Delhi/IBNS: In another blow to the opposition INDIA bloc, the Samajwadi Party Tuesday released a list of 16 candidates for the Lok Sabha elections in Uttar Pradesh amid seat-sharing talks with the Congress.

SP supremo Akhilesh Yadav made it clear that his party will do what it thinks is best and needs no clearance from the Congress.

The move, not unexpected, comes after Mamata Banerjee in Bengal and AAP's Bhagwant Mann in Punjab announced to go alone in the Lok Sabha elections.

More recently, the bloc received a huge blow in the form of Nitish Kumar deserting the alliance and joining hands with its old ally Bharatiya Janata Party, and taking oath as the chief minister of Bihar for the ninth time with the support of the saffron party.

The seat-sharing issue with the Samajwadi Party could be "difficult" became clear last year after the Congress's local leaders in Madhya Pradesh refused to honour the central leadership's agreement with Akhilesh Yadav for six seats.

Yadav issued a list of 16 candidates, sending a message to Congress that if they wanted an alliance in UP, they needed to agree to what the Samajwadi Party offered. It is a clear indication that in UP, the Samajwadi Party will make decisions in the alliance in its way.

In 80-seat Uttar Pradesh, Yadav has offered the Congress 11 seats. In 2019, in alliance with Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party, the Samajwadi Party had not contested from Amethi and Rae Bareli as a gesture of courtesy.

Among the candidates named Tuesday is Dimple Yadav, the wife of the SP chief, who will be contesting from family bastion Mainpuri.

In 2019, the Congress had won 44 seats and very few of them were from the northeast or the Hindi belt. In Uttar Pradesh, it won only one seat, Raebareli, as Rahul Gandhi lost to Smriti Irani in Amethi

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