The biggest state in the country with over 22 crore population has seen it all-from long spells of President's rule, fractured mandate, mass defections, mid-term elections and withdrawal of support in not so distant past. Beginning with the launch of a campaign video back in October past year which was centred around Akhilesh Yadav and his wife Dimple Yadav with no mention of Mulayam Singh, to his token presence in a handful of the party's campaign posters, indications are that Mulayam Singh is taking a step back.
Rejecting the rumors of entering into an alliance with any other party, Mayawati led-Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) on Friday said it would wait for the results and then take a call on it.
Akhilesh Yadav told the BBC Hindi that he was confident of the Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance winning the staggered assembly election. "We will not let the BJP rule Uttar Pradesh". Earlier in the day, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi debunked exit polls predicting a win for BJP in UP. The India Today-Axis poll has predicted a landslide victory for the BJP in Uttar Pradesh with the party expected to win a whopping 251-279 seats.
Most of the exit polls come out on Thursday projected the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as the single largest party in Uttar Pradesh, but stated that it would fall short of the majority mark of 202 needed to form the government on its own in Lucknow. The Samajwadi Party and Congress will get enough seats to form the government.
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The BSP once again split, albeit in a controversial manner and Mulayam Singh Yadav became the chief minister of the state in August 2003 with the help of independents and RKP besides the BSP's splinter group numbering 37. In Uttarakhand and Goa, the exit polls put the BJP ahead of the Congress.
BSP sources said this evening that Mayawati had discounted the possibility of such an alliance, saying she never trusted the exit polls.
The war of thrones is finally set to conclude and with the date set for 11 March, Uttar Pradesh will get their new Chief Minister.