Akhilesh Yadav united warring clan to defend family fief Mainpuri | India News


NEW DELHI: The Yadav family fief of Mainpuri was never under threat in view of sheer demographics and organisational machinery of SP, but the BJP aggression to wrest the Lok Sabha seat vacated by Mulayam Singh Yadav’s demise raised the excitement. On Thursday, BJP hopes of a keen contest proved unfounded as Dimple Yadav won at a canter, defeating Raghuraj Shakya by around 2. 9 lakh votes.
The architect of the strategy to defend the home turf was SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, who took the initiative to unite the divided family and then led the campaign with gusto to ensure there was no repeat of June defeats in two party forts — Azamgarh and Rampur. BJP had hoped to slip through cracks in Yadav family as “chacha” Shivpal Yadav was in open clash with “bhatija” Akhilesh. But the latter cemented the cracks and presented a picture of united clan. What followed was aggressive campaigning that discarded complacency witnessed in Azamgarh and Rampur.
But Akhilesh also turned a page in Mainpuri contest by shifting the tone of his campaign to address OBCs, that SP was once identified with. After Akhilesh came to power and during his first stint in opposition, the party’s hard focus on backward classes had dimmed as the Yadav GenNext was seen to soften the edges of SP’s image forged by Mulayam’s Mandal era aggression. But faced with an aggressive BJP looking to re-enact its strategy of “non-Yadav” polarisation, Akhilesh addressed the issues directly, repeatedly warning about “BJP’s design to end Ambedkar’s Constitution” and “their history of dividing the backwards”.

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