Lucknow: Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav on Monday held a meeting with Bahujan Samaj Party President Mayawati to discuss the political situation in view of the exit polls results.
The hour-long meeting was held at the BSP chief's Mall Avenue residence here.
The two leaders made a seat-to-seat assessment but decided to wait for the results rather than speculate on the exit poll results.
Talking briefly to reporters after the meeting, Akhilesh said: "We will talk after the results on May 23. I maintain my stand that we are winning 56 seats in UP."
Sources said that the two leaders also decided that they would hold talks with other opposition leaders on May 24, when all results are finally out.
"They will have telephonic talks with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) Chief Sharad Pawar on May 23 and with other leaders, including those of the Congress on May 24," said a source.
UP 'babus' Make Beeline for Mayawati's Residence
Bureaucrats, they say, are the best psephologists. They do not conduct exit polls but they have their ears to the ground.
In Uttar Pradesh, since the past one week, bureaucrats -- retired as well as serving -- have been seeking appointments with Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) president Mayawati.
Armed with outsized bouquets, they have been ‘wishing her the best' for the elections and ‘praying for her bright future'.
A staff in Mayawati's house said: "These officers are coming for courtesy visits and ‘Behenji' is meeting them all on days she is not campaigning. Most of them have served under Behenji when she was the Chief Minister and there are some new ones too belonging to the Bahujan Samaj. They are also giving her feedback about the prevailing situation."
Such visits before the election outcome are called ‘bhool na jana' (do not forget us) visits in the local parlance.
One such retired officer, who had served in the Chief Minister's secretariat between 2007 and 20-12 when Mayawati was the Chief Minister, admitted that he had called upon Behenji.
"I went to wish her good luck in these elections. The BSP is making a comeback and there is nothing wrong in wishing luck. You do not go to wish politicians when their chips are down," he said.
A few officers, however, have deliberately kept out of these ‘bhool na jana' visits.
Surprisingly, majority of the bureaucrats known to be close to Mayawati at one point of time or the other are unwilling to believe the exit polls.
"We do not know about the BJP but the BSP is definitely doing better than what has been projected. Exit polls can be managed but results cannot be manipulated," an officer said.
Another officer, who has sought an appointment with the BSP President, said that even if the exit poll results are to be believed, the BSP has made a comeback when compared to its 2014 tally in which the party had drawn a blank.