The Samajwadi Party and the Rashtriya Lok Dal on Friday announced their alliance for the Lok Sabha polls, with the RLD saying that the other party will leave seven seats in western Uttar Pradesh for its nominees.
SP president Akhilesh Yadav and RLD chief Jayant Chaudhary announced the tie-up on social media for the elections later this year.
"Congratulations to everyone on the alliance of RLD and SP. Let us all unite for victory," Yadav said in a post on X.
Reposting this tweet, Chaudhary said, "Always ready to protect national and constitutional values. We expect all workers of our alliance to move forward together for the development and prosperity of our region."
He also posted pictures of the two leaders shaking hands.
An RLD spokesperson told PTI that the seat-sharing deal was finalised at a meeting between the two leaders.
"The RLD will contest seven seats in western Uttar Pradesh," he said. But the spokesperson did not name the specific seats.
Uttar Pradesh has 80 Lok Sabha seats.
SP-RLD had contested assembly polls in alliance
Both the parties had contested the 2022 assembly elections in an alliance in which the SP had won 111 seats while the RLD bagged 8 seats.
In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls also, the RLD was part of the SP-BSP alliance. The RLD had got Mathura, Baghpat and Muzaffar Nagar seats but it lost on all the three while the SP and the BSP had won 5 seats and 10 seats, respectively.
The RLD's core vote bank has been the Jat population. The Lok Sabha constituencies where there is maximum Jat population are Muzaffarnagar, Kiarana, Bijnor, Mathura, Baghpat, Amroha and Meerut. These could be the seats on which the RLD is likely to contest, sources said.
Though the RLD did not have enough strength to send Chaudhary to the Rajya Sabha, the SP supported him in his election.
After the two parties, which are part of the opposition INDIA alliance, finalised their plan to go ahead together in the Lok Sabha polls, it is to be seen how the Congress proceeds in terms of seat-sharing in Uttar Pradesh.