Amidst discussions of opposition unity, Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav revealed his strategy that the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) would be overthrown in the upcoming general elections through a powerful coalition known as ‘PDA’—an acronym representing “Pichde” (backward classes), Dalit, and Alpasankhyak (minorities), including the Muslim community. Speaking at the NDTV UP Conclave in Lucknow, Yadav emphasized the significance of regional parties taking the lead in their respective states for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
Recalling the time when leaders from different parties advocated for elections to be fought under the leadership of the dominant party in a particular state, Yadav stressed the need for a large-hearted approach to defeat the BJP. He articulated his party’s formula of “80 harao, BJP hatao” (beat them on all 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh, remove the BJP from power), affirming that the state, which played a pivotal role in the BJP’s ascension to power in 2014, would now work to remove the party in 2024. Yadav expressed hope that parties aspiring to defeat the BJP would wholeheartedly support the Samajwadi Party and emphasized the importance of avoiding internal conflicts within the opposition alliance.
Yadav referred to past alliances, such as the Congress in 2017, the BSP in 2019, and smaller parties in 2022, emphasizing that these alliances were formed with a broad-minded approach. He called for similar support from all opposition parties, stressing the need for unity to achieve the desired outcome.
Regarding policy matters, Yadav expressed his party’s support for reservations in private sector jobs, linking it to the state’s vision of development. He criticized the current government’s failure to establish new marketplaces to benefit farmers and highlighted the disappointing state of employment, which largely consists of contractual, outsourced, or private jobs. He advocated for a caste census and demanded reservations in the private sector, in addition to government organizations.
Yadav also commented on the BJP’s internal divisions, characterizing the present scenario in Uttar Pradesh as a situation where every coach believes it is the engine. He highlighted the lack of a permanent Director General of Police (DGP) for three consecutive terms, emphasizing the disarray within the ruling party.
Recognizing the limited time for preparation before the 2024 elections, Yadav urged the opposition to start groundwork immediately to combat the BJP’s formidable election machinery. He emphasized the BJP’s extensive use of advertising campaigns and the need for the opposition to mobilize their workers despite the scorching temperatures. Yadav acknowledged the importance of early and strategic preparation to effectively counter the BJP’s tactics and win the electoral battle.