New Delhi: Drubbed in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections 2012, the Congress had never imagined that the party singled out by them during the election campaigns would take the control over the levers of power in the state.

The unexpected poll results declared in favour of the SP indicates that the Congress facing challenges in the Centre would join hands with the SP to overcome the mounting pressure by its allies. However, this will give the SP an opportunity to play an important role in national politics.

It can be gauged from the fact that with the beginning of ‘Budget Session’ on March 12, the Congress led UPA government would be under immense pressure to pass the budget due to differences with its main ally-the Trinmool Congress (TMC). More so, for the passage of bills lying in stalemate, the Congress would seek support from the SP, which is having 22 MPs in the Lok Sabha.

The landslide victory of the SP may also impact the selection of the Rajya Sabha members from UP scheduled to be held in March. Four to five new members from the SP may find a berth in the Upper House.

The Congress is in minority in Rajya Sabha therefore it has to seek support of the SP for the Presidential elections and for the passage of bills in the Parliament.

The biggest challenge that lies ahead of the UPA-II is the consensus over operationlisation of National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC). Several state governments have stood united in opposing the NCTC by claiming it as an attack on federal structure. In such a situation if the Congress tries to gain support from the SP on matters of national concern, it would have a negative impact on the party. It is therefore expected that the Congress will avoid taking such risks.

Considering the activities going on in political arena, the Congress-BSP patch up would not yield any positive results. Political analysts in the Congress are of the opinion that in the current situation the SP can only provide some relief to the Congress at the Centre. However, this will depend upon the SP Chief Mulayam Singh Yadav’s stance.