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'Labharti' voters helped BJP to demolish SP bastions in 2022 UP Polls

The Etawah assembly seat has been won by the BJP's Sarita while Jaiveer Singh of the BJP has won the Mainpuri assembly seat

Friday March 11, 2022 9:37 PM, IANS


Lucknow: Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav may have been called the architect of the OBC alliance in the recently concluded elections in Uttar Pradesh but the results show that his party lost to the BJP in its family boroughs.

The Etawah assembly seat has been won by the BJP's Sarita while Jaiveer Singh of the BJP has won the Mainpuri assembly seat.

In Etah, it is again the BJP which has won the seat while Firozabad - which is the bastion of Prof Ram Gopal Yadav - has been won by the BJP's Manish Asija.

Kannauj, that was said to be the strongest Samajwadi area, has also been wrested by first timer and former IPS officer Aseem Arun.

The only saving grace in these Samajwadi strongholds is the victory of Akhilesh Yadav from Karhal in Mainpuri and Shivpal Yadav from Jaswantnagar in Etawah.

According to sources, the BJP effectively dismantled the OBC rainbow that Akhilesh had built through a new vote bank of 'Labharti' - beneficiaries of various government schemes.

"We did not hanker after castes and communities. We reached out to the beneficiaries of our central and state schemes and explained to them how they had benefitted under the double-engine government. The caste factor automatically got decimated and we won with handsome margins in areas that were believed to be Samajwadi bastions," said a senior BJP functionary.

He said that the 'Labharti' group had got houses, toilets, free rations, gas connections, power connections and money in their accounts.

"All this was given without caste consideration and the magic worked," he said.

Interestingly, none of the opposition parties gave a second thought to the emergence of the 'Labharti' vote bank and restricted their campaign to criticism of the BJP government.

A Congress functionary admitted, on condition of anonymity, that the party had overlooked the 'Labharti' factor.

"It was a mistake and we have paid heavily for it. The BJP quietly created this vote bank while we pursued traditional politics," he said.


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