They say whoever has Uttar Pradesh in its kitty will rule India. Any formation in the Centre will have either Bahujan Samaj Party or the Samajwadi Party as its ally. Because UP sends 80 MPs to the Lok Sabha.
The SP, in all probability, will have an alliance with the Congress though there are some hiccups in the seat-sharing arrangement. Last week's Sonia Gandhi-Mulayam Singh meet did not yield much results. The SP may not feature in any Third Front talks as they backed the Congress in the nuke deal confidence motion.
Current tally in UP: SP: 35; BSP 19; Cong: 9; BJP: 10; RLD: 3
Poll factors: Muslim votebank, Mayawati factor, BJP's tie-up with Ajit Singh's Rashtriya Lok Dal, and Kalyan Singh's exit from the BJP.
Image: Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh with party general secretary Amar Singh in New Delhi.