Setting his house in order was Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhileh Yadav’s top priority just a month ago. Now firmly in saddle and in control of his party apparatus, he has sent a searing warning to the detractors within.
In what is seen as targeting his uncle Shivpal Yadav in the SP bastion Etawah, Akhilesh, in a public rally said that he was leading “the real” Samajwadi Party.
“Those in whom I had confidence have created a rift between me and Netaji (Mulayam). They wanted to snatch the ‘cycle’ (SP symbol) from me,” he said at his first election meeting at the exhibition ground.
In a clear reference to his uncle, Shivpal Yadav who is contesting from the neighbouring Jaswantnagar seat, Akhilesh said, “These very people want to float a new party…the election here is different from what is being fought in the state. Here efforts are to defeat me…people of Etawah should not fall prey to any such design.”
“Thousands of people are sitting here. Ours is the real Samajwadi Party. It is a fact that my visit here has not been frequent but then the situation was different. But I will take care of Etawah and spend more time,” he told the gathering.
Earlier, Shivpal Yadav had announced that he will float a new party once the elections are over. Both those remarks were set aside by his elder brother Mulayam Singh Yadav, who had ruled out any such possibility.
“Some people had conspired to throw me out of the party, but I did not allow them to succeed in their designs…I have worked for development and brought welfare schemes but they wanted to weaken me,” Akhilesh said without taking any name.
Meanwhile, Shivpal Yadav on Thursday said he has Mulayam’s blessings and refused to comment on Akhilesh’s remarks.
“I have Netaji’s (Mulayam) blessing and whatever he orders,I will always abide by it,” he said.
In what was seen as a virtual split of the party, the matter had even reached the Election Commission where Akhilesh Yadav ‘faction’ was given legal ownership of the party symbol ‘Cycle’. The fight between the two guards within the party was also over SP-Congress alliance, with old guard opposing it.
(With inputs from the PTI)