After the Bahujan Samaj Party denied any alliance with Congress in the upcoming assembly elections it has announced to contest all 200 assembly seats in Rajasthan.
In the 2013 assembly elections, the party had contested in 195 constituencies and secured a 3.37 percent vote share, which was 7.60 percent in the 2008 elections, when the party had won six seats.
State party vice-president Dungarram Gedar said, “Our preparations are in full swing and we will contest on all 200 seats in the forthcoming elections”. He also said that they will soon finalize the ticket following which BSP chief Mayawati will hold rallies in the state.
Hoping that BSP has good chances in the state, another leader of the party Bhagwan Singh said, “We are expecting to increase our tally in the 2018-elections because people are unhappy with both the BJP and the Congress. There is a resentment against the ruling BJP and people are not seeing any hope in the Congress”.
The possible vote bank of the party lies in the districts in eastern Rajasthan like Bharatpur, Dholpur, Karauli, Sawaimadhopur, Alwar and in northern parts like Hanumangarh, Sriganganagar, Bikaner which has a significant number of Scheduled Castes (SC) population.
There are 34 Scheduled Castes and 25 Scheduled Tribe seats out of the total 200 seats in Rajasthan.
Although BSP has been contesting assembly elections in Rajasthan since 1990, it registered its first victory in 1998 by winning two seats. In 1998, the party had contested on 108 seats and secured 2.17 percent vote share. In 2003 elections, the BSP fought in 124 constituencies and won two seats and increased its vote share to 3.98 percent. The biggest victory of the party in the state was in the 2008 elections when six of the party’s candidates won elections and the vote share increased to 7.60 percent.
But these six BSP MLAs soon joined the Congress and supported the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government.