Thursday, August 11 2022
Lucknow: BSPit is Shah Alam alias Guddu Jamali, who finished third in the three-way battle in the Azamgarh parliamentary poll, said he accepts his defeat and will continue to prepare the ground for the party for the upcoming general elections in 2024.
“Our message didn’t reach people the way it should have. Our party leader did everything possible. I accept the verdict of the people,” he said.
Jamali garnered over 29% of the vote in the partial poll indicating the BSP’s relevance and revival in mainstream UP politics after a dismal showing in assembly polls.
The Rashtriya Ulama Council and AIMIM had backed Jamali in the by-election which could have brought him Muslim votes.
Azamgarh has about 20% Muslim votes followed by 15% Yadav and Jatav votes. Non-Jatav Dalits also make up a large chunk of about 20% of voters.
BSP leader Mayawati had declared Jamali’s candidacy in March and Jamali had started campaigning much earlier than the others. Mayawati called his party’s performance neck and neck.
The seat of Azamgarh Lok Sabha has been a stronghold of the Samajwadi party. Jamali, on the other hand, had won the Mubarakpur assembly seat twice since 2012 on the BSP ticket but lost this year. He had left BSP in November last year to join SP but was refused a ticket and moved to AIMIM and contested from Mubarakpur headquarters but lost.
As soon as he joined the Bahujan Samaj party in March, he was declared the party’s candidate for the Azamgarh by-election after Samajwadi party chairman Akhilesh Yadav left the seat.
Also in the 2022 UP assembly elections, the BSP had declared Muslim or dominant-caste candidates in at least 120 seats, while the SP had already declared its own candidates and finished second in 18 seats.
The BSP had declared 90 Muslim candidates and in at least 16 its candidates belonged to the same caste as that of the SP.
In Firozabad, the BJP beat the SP by a whopping margin of 32,000 votes while BSP’s Shazia Hasan garnered over 37,000 votes.
Similarly, the BJP won the city of Moradabad by a narrow margin as the BSP also fielded a Muslim candidate. The BJP also won Hapur beating Rashtriya candidate Lok Dal as the BSP candidate split the votes.
The BSP and AIMIM had reduced the votes of Muslims who would otherwise have gone to the Samajwadi party in the Azamgarh by-election.
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