LUCKNOW: Striking a conciliatory tone in a bid to improve relations with BSP supremo Mayawati, Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav on Thursday signalled that his party was for a ‘grand alliance’ to take on the BJP in 2019 and asked Mayawati to ”forget” the past.
”Sometimes we have to forget the past to move forward,” Akhilesh told reporters here in response to a query on an alliance with BSP apparently referring to the alleged attack on the BSP supremo after her party had withdrawn support to SP, by his party supporters in 1995 though she escaped unhurt.
BSP and SP had contested the UP Assembly polls in alliance in 1993 and had emerged victorious.
Akhilesh also hinted that he was not averse to taking the Congress along in a possible alliance in 2019 to counter the BJP. ”My friendship with Congress will continue….both of us (Rahul and Akhilesh) are young and we have to work together to rid the country of various problems,” he said.
Congress and SP had contested the 2017 Assembly polls in UP in alliance though it failed to click.
Akhilesh had on Wednesday, soon after the declaration of results of the Gorakhpur and Phulpur Lok Sabha by-polls, where his party registered impressive wins with BSP’s support, had driven down to Mayawati’s residence to thank her for the support.
The SP supremo said that but for the faulty EVMs, his party would have won by greater margins in the two LS by-polls. He also expressed hope that the defeats would bring about a change in the ”language” used by the chief minister Yogi Adityanath.
”It (SP-BSP joining hands) was like the coming together of ”ker-ber” (the banana tree and Indian Plum…the two cannot grow together as one is soft and the other is thorny)….its like friendship between a snake and shrew mouse,” Adityanath had said.