The Jana Sena Sunday announced an electoral tie-up with the Bahujan Samaj Party in Andhra Pradesh, allotting three Lok Sabha and 21 assembly seats to it for the April 11 elections. Announcing this, Sena president Pawan Kalyan said he wished to see BSP chief Mayawati as the Prime Minister.
Kalyan had met Mayawati in Lucknow two days ago. BSP senior leader and Rajya Sabha member Veer Singh came to Vijayawada Sunday to formalise the alliance. Accordingly, the BSP has been allotted SC reserved Lok Sabha seats Chittoor, Tirupati and Bapatla. The 21 assembly seats have not been finalised yet. Many could not appreciate her personality and greatness. The country needs a strong leader like Mayawati as Prime Minister.
This is the wish of crores of people and mine too, Kalyan told reporters here. A few years ago he was asked to be the BSP AP unit president but he could not oblige because of the then political situation, the Sena chief said.
Veer Singh said AP needed a Chief Minister like Pawan Kalyan, saying he was aiming to usher in a social change. Mayawati would tour Amalapuram on April 3 and Tirupati the next day and then go to Hyderabad, he said.
The Jana Sena said its alliance with BSP would extend to April 11 Lok Sabha elections in neighbouring Telangana as well but did not specify the seats each would contest. The Jana Sena is also yet to finalise seat-sharing with the CPI and the CPI-M in AP though Kalyan held several rounds of talks with the Left leaders in the last few days.
Meanwhile, former IPS officer V Lakshmi Narayana joined the Jana Sena, ending speculation about his political moves. Narayana shot into fame as the then Joint Director of CBI in AP, who led the probe into the Jaganmohan Reddy disproportionate assets case.
A Maharashtra cadre officer, he took voluntary retirement late last year and toyed with the idea of floating his own political outfit. There was speculation that the ruling TDP might field him as a candidate from Visakhapatnam district.
Narayana met Pawan Kalyan after midnight Saturday and formally joined the Sena on Sunday at a function in the party office here. Former Vice-Chancellor of Sri Krishna Devaraya University Rajagopal, a close relative of Narayana, also joined the Sena.
(With inputs from agencies.)