Amid the rift between the Congress and the Samajwadi Party (SP) over their failure to arrive at a seat-sharing deal for the upcoming Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh, former Uttar Pradesh chief minister and SP supremo Akhilesh Yadav on Friday accused the Congress of “betraying” the INDIA bloc.
Speaking to reporters on a visit to MP’s Chhatarpur on Friday, the former UP chief minister said, “The people of Madhya Pradesh have been following the recent events closely and are now aware that if anyone has betrayed the alliance, it is the Congress. However, further discussions on taking the alliance forward will be held ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.” “The power of PDA (Pichhde, Dalit, and Alpsankhyak) will prevail over the NDA,” the SP chief added.
Akhilesh said on Monday that the bicycle rally of the Samajwadi Party, titled the ‘Samajwadi PDA Yatra’, will carry on as planned, adding that he was hopeful that the INDIA bloc will win next year’s Lok Sabha elections.
The rally marks the launch of the SP’s campaign for the next general elections.
The strained partners in the INDIA bloc have been at loggerheads following the breakdown in seat-sharing talks, with Akhilesh firing the “Chirkut” (small-timer) jibe at Congress’ state unit chief Ajay Rai.
Upset over the Congress’s alleged seat snub to the SP ahead of the Madhya Pradesh Assembly polls, Akhilesh said, “I want to tell the Congress, don’t let your chirkut leaders talk about us.” He added that he was clueless if the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) was meant to take on the BJP at the national or state level.
“If Congress didn’t want to give us seats (in MP), they could have said it before. We have decided on going it alone in Madhya Pradesh. After (the breakdown in seat-sharing talks in) Madhya Pradesh, I have come to realize that INDIA is meant only for the general elections. But if Congress continues to behave like this, then who will stand with them? If we fight against the BJP with such confusion and doubts in our minds (around the alliance), we will never succeed,” he added.
The Samajwadi Party (SP) chief coined the term ‘PDA’, saying that it is the name of the unity born out of shared consciousness and feeling against the exploitation and oppression of those who are “Pichhde” (backwards), Dalit, and “Alpasankhyak” (minority).