In a show of mahagathbandhan unity, Samajwadi Party (SP) leader and wife of Akhilesh Yadav, Dimple Yadav, touched Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati's feet and sought blessings before addressing a public gathering at a rally in Kannauj.
In a video from the rally, Dimple is seen bending to touch Mayawati's feet, after which the BSP chief pats her on the back. Dimple's husband and SP chief Akhilesh Yadav was also present.
During the rally, Mayawati said Dimple was like a member of her family.
Terming Dimple as a "mature" woman, Mayawati said, "SP president Akhilesh Yadav respects me as an elder of the family and after this Gathbandhan I also have accepted Dimple as a part of my family."
She also appealed to public present at the event to vote for Dimple. "Make her (Dimple) win by record margin," she said.
She then went to say that the "theatrics of chowkidari" will not help BJP win elections. Terming the BJP's campaign on national security "unfortunate", Mayawati said, "Every now and then our country witnesses terrorist attacks and many soldiers of our country have got martyred but despite all this, the government is trying to use this issue for political gains."
Attacking the BJP government for using investigative agencies against its opponents, Mayawati said, "Alike the Congress party, the BJP government is using CBI, ED and Income Tax to retain its rule. You have to ensure that neither the Congress nor the BJP comes to power at the Centre."
"BJP promised to transfer Rs 15 lakh into your bank account, the promise has turned into a cruel joke for the poor. Congress is also promising Rs 6000 every month to every poor family but this is also not going to end poverty. If we (the Gathbandhan) form the government at the centre we will provide employment to everybody in government and non-government sectors," she assured.
In Kannauj, polling will be held on April 29, and counting of votes will take place on May 23. As per the seat-sharing pact in Uttar Pradesh, SP will contest on 37 seats, BSP on 38 and RLD on three.