Issues of governance will play a major role in changing the emerging political trends in UP. As a result of disenchantment with Mayawati’s rule, she’s unlikely to receive a clear mandate as she did in 2007 – and the people of UP might have to deal with a term of coalition politics.
Indicating his thinking towards a complex result, Amit Srivastava, from Lucknow, said, “It depends on which identity votes in what percentage. If upper caste Hindus have voted more, then it is the BJP and Congress that are going to gain the most. If backward class and Muslims vote more, then it is the SP that will gain the maximum. If there is an overall increase in Dalit voting - the BSP will gain the maximum. If the young and women vote more, then it is the Congress that’s going to gain the most as a single party. But usually high turnout favour cadre-based parties implying the BJP and Communists. But since Communists are almost absent and there is not much swing in favour of the BJP. Any party, including the BJP, can gain.”
In such as scenario, as BSP and Congress seem to be sworn enemies, a coalition of SP and the Congress could nose ahead as BSP might not pull its full weight to a position of majority. With no possibility of SP aligning with BJP, the only other coalition, between BJP and BSP, might materialize. This is the situation where possibilities of outside support to major alliance partner will emerge when election results come in.
Some political personalities might play a decisive role in election results. Rising SP leader Akhilesh Yadav could be SP’s unproven trump card as many people in UP find him promising as a leader. So, Yadav’s gain might translate into Mayawati’s loss and decide the fate of BSP and SP in UP.
The other strong personality that may have an impact on UP’s fate is Rahul Gandhi, whose energetic campaigning has left people, amazed, puzzled and defensive – depending on one’s political inclination. “People will have voted for Congress due to Rahul but so much to elevate it into a position where it will play a major role in the formation of the government,” said Manish Rastogi, who belongs to Kanpur.
So it seems that in a four-way contest, the political future of the state will be decided by what people think of Mayawati’s record of governance. If people have voted on the basis of anti-incumbency, the land scam in UP, and the many decisions taken by her frittering away the state’s wealth, then a hung assembly is the most likely outcome that the state faces.