Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav has cast aside differences with estranged uncle Shivpal Yadav to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the upcoming Uttar Pradesh assembly elections. Shivpal Yadav had split from the Samajwadi Party ahead of the 2017 elections to form his own party, the Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party Lohia (PSPL). After a meeting with Shivpal Yadav in Lucknow Thursday, Akhilesh Yadav tweeted the two parties had agree to an alliance as part of the Samajwadi Party’s broader policy of taking regional parties along “to a historic victory.”

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“There was a meeting with the National President of PSPL and the matter of alliance was decided. The policy of taking regional parties along is continuously strengthening the SP and leading the SP and other allies to a historic victory,” he tweeted in Hindi.

Akhilesh Yadav has already forged electoral alliances with Janwadi Party (Socialist), Om Prakash Rajbhar’s SBSP, Keshav Dev Maurya’s Mahan Dal, the Apna Dal faction led by Krishna Patel and Jayant Chowdhury’s Rashtriya Lok Dal.

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Although Shivpal Yadav’s party’s influence is limited to a few seats in Etawah, his inputs as a veteran politician are likely to help the Samajwadi Party’s poll prospects.

“We are ready for any sacrifice to remove the BJP from power. If Akhilesh Yadav gives tickets to our winning candidates, we are ready for any sacrifice, including an unconditional merger with the SP,” Shivpal Yadav said at a rally in Barabanki last month. The duo had clashed ahead of the 2017 elections with Mulayam Singh Yadav siding with his brother over leadership of the party.

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Akhilesh Yadav, who was also the Chief Minister at the time, prevailed with a firmer grip on the party.

Opinion polls show the BJP-led alliance in Uttar Pradeh, which won 325 seats with a 41.4% vote share in 2017, will face a tougher battle from Samajwadi Party in the 2022 state polls.