17 January, 2021

Book-Keeper’s Miscalculation

Mayawati has antagonised her right-hand man. Siddiqui’s ouster from BSP triggers fresh crisis in the party amid slide.

Book-Keeper’s Miscalculation

Kitaab and hisaab—books and accounts—are the words resonating in Uttar Pradesh’s politics ever since BSP supremo Mayawati threw longtime loyalist Naseemuddin Siddiqui out for “anti-party” activities. Last week, Siddiqui and his son Afzal were sacked, but they exited kicking and screaming rather than fading out. Since then, Siddiqui senior has been drawing great attention to himself and Mayawati by talking incessantly about alleged financial shenanigans within the Bahujan Samaj Party.

In the recent UP assembly elections, the BSP gave 103 tickets to Muslim cand­idates, but their showing was rem­arkably poor as the party’s overall tally sank to its lowest ever: 19 seats. Now, as the 1984-founded party appeared to be rethi­nking that strategy, Siddiqui has presen­ted ‘evidence’ of wrongdoing within the BSP and alleged that there is no room for Muslims in the BSP either.

The evidence Siddiqui presented on the first charge of financial impropriety is, oddly, a series of his own taped conversations with...



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