Young & powerful
When it marks its 25th birthday on Tuesday, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) - one of India's youngest political parties - will have plenty to celebrate. In a country where parties decades old are in struggle mode due to growing fragmentation of the Indian vote, the BSP has mastered the art of winning elections and scripting history.
And, with an aggressive Dalit leader Mayawati leading it, the BSP is now in overwhelming command of Uttar Pradesh, having captured power in the country's most populous and politically crucial state on its own in 2007, stunning its supporters and foes alike.
The unpredictable Mayawati, determined to win the maximum of the state's 80 Lok Sabha seats, has set her eyes on the prime minister's post although incumbent Manmohan Singh has ridiculed the ambition.
Image: BSP leader and Uttar Pradesh CM Mayawati during election rally in Mumbai on Wednesday. (Copyright PTI. Unauthorised reproduction prohibited.)