Two days after a show of strength and unity at Akhilesh Yadav’s rath yatra in Lucknow, the Samajwadi Party stalwarts held a grand event in Lucknow to celebrate its silver jubilee anniversary.
However, at the grand event the warring nephew and uncle – Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and Shivpal Yadav – took turns to take digs at each other in their speeches.
Shivpal made it clear that he does not want to be the Chief Minister, and said Akhilesh can “sack” and “insult” him but he will give his blood for the party.
“I want to tell popular CM Akhilesh that whatever sacrifice you want from me, I will give. I never want to become CM. You can insult me, sack me many times (as minister) but I can even give my blood for the party,” Shivpal taunted.
“You (CM) have done a good job. But I have also done a good job in past four years in the ministries given to me. You can verify works done by me in PWD, irrigation, Revenue, Cooperative and others departments”, he added.
Shivpal was sacked by his nephew CM Akhilesh as a minister in his cabinet in a tit-for-tat move to settle scores.
“Some intruders have entered (in the party) and are creating atmosphere (of differences)…You (Akhilesh) can insult me anytime…What you want from me just tell me and I will not say anything…But whenever question of netaji (Mulayam) arise, I myself, the entire party will take a stand and not tolerate. I have to stay with netaji,” warned Shivpal in his speech.
Akhilesh too kept the jibes going. He warned against any damage to the party.
“I will not reply to certain things. Ram Manohar Lohia ji used to say he would be heard but only after death. I want to say that people will hear but only after everything is damaged,” said Akhilesh in his address.
“If you want to take my test, I am ready for any thing. Our target is to defeat BJP and BSP in 2017 elections. This UP election will decide future of the country”, Akhilesh added.
“The party (BJP) which got over 70 (out of 80) seats in Lok Sabha polls did nothing for the state except giving model villages scheme. BJP created differences in the society by Muzaffarnagar and Kairana incidents. SP will return in UP and will not let such forces to rise” he added.
On ongoing power tussle within the Yadav clan has been on for months. Just months before the Assembly polls, the party has been battling a very public family feud which the party supremo Mulayam Singh has had a tough time settling.
In a bid to portray a united front ahead of the 2017 state Assembly elections, the feuding first family had come together on Thursday to flag off Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav’s ‘rath yatra’.
Again, to show all is well within the party, RJD chief Lalu Prasad, who was present at the function, held hands of both Akhilesh and Shivpal.
(With inputs from PTI)