The Yadav Feud: Who Stands to Gain in UP Politics If SP Splits?

If the SP splits following Akhilesh’s expulsion, the BSP stands to gain and the BJP stands to lose in Uttar Pradesh.

2 min read

Mulayam Singh and son Akhilesh are at loggerheads just before the UP elections. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)

On Friday, Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav expelled Akhilesh Yadav and Ram Gopal Yadav from the party for six years, citing indiscipline as the reason. This expulsion makes the possibility of the SP splitting more likely.

If the party does split, who stands to gain? For one, Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).

SP’s Loss is BSP’s Gain

The BSP could directly in Uttar Pradesh from the SP feud. The UP vote bank consists of 21 percent Dalit and 19 percent Muslim voters. The majority of the Muslim votes are with the SP. However, following the split, if the Muslim vote bank sees the party weakening and loses confidence, it might swing its support to the BSP. Consequently, the BSP, which already enjoys the Dalit support, stands to gain the most with this split.

The Muslim vote bank might also be divided between the Congress and the BSP, but Mayawati’s party will have the upper hand.

However, if Akhilesh walks away with the major chunk of the SP rallying behind him, the Muslim voters might invest their support in him.


Good or Bad For the BJP?

Akhilesh has of late been lobbying for a coalition with the Congress. Following the split, it’s highly likely that Akhilesh would join hands with Rahul – and even the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD). Akhilesh’s possible coalition could have an adverse impact on the BJP’s Uttar Pradesh prospects.

Moreover, if the split does lead to a shift in the Muslim vote bank from the SP to the BSP, it would mean an uncomfortable situation for the BJP.


Is Akhilesh Secure?

A floor test is imminent. Akhilesh will have to prove his majority on the floor of the House with support from at least 202 MLAs in the state Assembly. Only then can he retain his chair.

The SP currently has 229 out of 403 MLAs. Akhilesh is likely to get support from the Congress and the RLD during the floor test. And he may still continue as state chief minister if he manages to garner support from other parties, including the RLD, the Congress or even the BSP.

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