MUMBAI: After a lot of back and forth, the Congress in Maharashtra has decided to cement its alliance with Dalit leader Prakash Ambedkar-led Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi to avoid the division of secular votes in the 2024 Lok Sabha.
In 2019, Vancht Bahujan Aghadi had bagged seven per cent vote share in Lok Sabha elections that resulted in defeat of eleven Congress and NCP candidates in Maharashtra. Former Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan and former union home minister Ashok Chavan also lost the 2019 elections due to Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi factor in their respective constituencies.
President Prakash Ambedkar had arranged the ‘Samvidhan Saamaan Mahasabha’ at Shivaji Park in Mumbai where Congress leader Rahul Gandhi was invited as a first step to bring parties together and burying previous bitterness. However, in reply, Gandhi wrote the letter and expressed his inability to attend this program and extended wishes. On his behalf, Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole attended this — Samvidhan Saamaan Mahasabha.
Patole said that the Congress party and Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi can ally for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections to avoid the division of secular votes. He said that the democracy and constitution is in danger due to the authoritarian rule of the BJP under the leadership of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Former Maharashtra chief minister and senior Congress leader Ashok Chavan is also in favour.
Division of secular votes
The Congress in Maharashtra has decided to cement its alliance with Dalit leader Prakash Ambedkar-led Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi to avoid the division of secular votes in the 2024 Lok Sabha ‘under authoritarian rule of the BJP’.