Mayawati ruffles Congress's feathers by blaming UPA for fuel price
Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) President, Mayawati's remarks holding the previous United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government and the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) equally responsible for the steep hike in fuel prices has ruffled many a feather in the Congress.
Some Congress leaders feel Mayawati's statements will once again raise a question mark on attempts at striking Opposition unity, ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
Mayawati blames UPA, BJP for fuel price hike
Both NDA, UPA have disregarded interests of poor, says Mayawati
Mayawati has stated both the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and the UPA have disregarded the interests of the farmers and the poor.
The previous UPA regime had brought fuel out of government control and the ruling NDA continued with the policy, she said, adding that after coming to power in 2014, the NDA had deregulated diesel, which had hurt the interests of the poor.
Congress skeptical about her intentions for Opposition unity
Unsurprisingly, Congress wasn't amused with Mayawati's comments, which is largely being viewed in the political circles as a dent in the Opposition unity against the BJP ahead of the pivotal 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
"Party workers are not happy with the BSP President's observations and they are very skeptical about her intentions (for unity among Opposition parties)," a Congress insider said.
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She's possibly bargaining ahead of Assembly polls: Senior Congress leader
Notably, the BSP chief's views came a day after her party stayed away from the 'Bharat Bandh' organized by Congress on fuel price hike.
May be "she's trying to gain upper hand in negotiations in seat-sharing," ahead of the Assembly polls in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh, said a senior Congress leader.
It can be perceived as her bargaining tactics, he added.
"Negotiations shouldn't hurt party, Congress stronger in these states"
"It's, however, for the Central leadership to understand that we should weigh our options and potential before entering into any alliance. Negotiations on seat-sharing shouldn't be at the cost of the party and its workers as Congress is stronger in these states," he said.