Luckow : With �Mahagathbandhan� (grand alliance) throwing out BJP from Bihar, it is high time for the major political parties in Uttar Pradesh to re-chalk out their strategies for 2017 assembly election. The rout has been possible in Bihar only because of coming together of two main parties (Janata dal-U and Rashtriya Janata Dal) against resurgent BJP. The Congress too has been beneficiary of joining the alliance.
The then chief minister Lalu Yadav had stopped LK Advani�s Ayodhya rath Yatra on October 30, 1990 and after 25 years, he has punctured Narendra Modi�s juggernaut.
Even though there are three assembly elections lined up in 2016, but after Bihar the focus has shifted on UP, which during the last one year had been laboratory of rabid communal forces. Even amid electioneering the �beef politics� was also exported to Bihar from UP. But people of Bihar saw through the game. The astounding results are also a major setback for the UP�s ruling Samajwadi Party, which had midway deserted the Bihar�s grand alliance, presumably to stop Nitish-Lalu march and help the BJP. Muslims had not taken kindly SP�s desertion of Bihar alliance.
Now Bihar has thrown a big question whether UP�s main non-BJP formations-SP, BSP and Congress will come together to revenge 2014 Lok Sabha rout and repeat Bihar. No doubt all the three parties had joined hands with one another in the past, but now at least SP and BSP entering into alliance appears to be far-fetched.
Victorious Lalu Yadav has announced intention to launch drive against BJP from Varanasi (Prime Minister Narendra Modi�s constituency) next week. The announcement is a clear indication that grand alliance (JD-U, RJD and Congress) would replicate its efforts in UP. But this alone will not suffice. Since RJD and JD-U have hardly any base in UP, they could not simply bank of small size of UP Congress to make any major gain. It would certainly require support of either SP or BSP. After 2014 Lok Sabha debacle Lalu Yadav had advocated for alliance between BSP and SP. But there was no response from the two parties. Now with SP facing massive anti-incumbency, BSP would not like to touch it even with barge pole. The antipathy between the two is also well known. Mayawati has not yet forgotten physical attack on her at VIP guesthouse in 1995 by SP goons.
Thus as an alternative the Bihar alliance could make efforts with the BSP for seat adjustment to stop division of votes in UP. This could be possible by mobilizing a section of backward community (Nitish Kumar�s community Kurmis), Dalits and Muslims in its favour. In view of its past performance the BSP on its own cannot hope to get Muslim support. Since Nitish Kumar-Lalu team has proved its secular credential among Muslims in Bihar, the community, which is highly upset with the SP, could find a viable way out. Hyderabad�s Assaduddin Owaisi could also chip in to be relevant in UP politics.
However badly mauled BJP could not be under-estimated in its design to stop any Bihar-type alliance in UP. It would certainly use all its weapons in its armour to scuttle any such move. In Bihar there was no anti-incumbency and there was no CBI case. UP is different ball game. With the CBI chasing Mayawati in DA, NRHM and Yadav Singh cases and Mulayam Singh Yadav�s family in Yadav Singh scam and DA case, the Damocles sword is hanging over them. UP is in for hectic political shenanigan.
(The Author is a Senior Journalist)