Thursday, Oct 23, 2014

Amar Singh might return to SP — on Akhilesh’s terms

Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav talks with Amar Singh at the inauguration of Janeshwar Mishra Park in Lucknow on Tuesday. (Express photo by Vishal Srivastav) Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav talks with Amar Singh at the inauguration of Janeshwar Mishra Park in Lucknow on Tuesday. (Express photo by Vishal Srivastav)
Written by Mohd Faisal Fareed | Lucknow | Posted: August 7, 2014 5:15 am

A day after Amar Singh shared the dais with SP president Mulayam Singh Yadav and Chief Minister  Akhilesh Yadav during the inauguration of Janeshwar Mishra Park, the party leadership seems to be in a hurry to bring him back.

The decision to re-induct Amar Singh, however, rests with Akhilesh and not Mulayam. SP leaders informed that even if Amar Singh was brought back, he will not be able to regain his old position of number two.

Now he will have to follow Akhilesh, who has taken over the reins of the party from his father, sources in the party said.

Reportedly, the CM had decided to invite Singh to Tuesday’s event nearly four weeks ago.

Details ranging from seating arrangement on stage to minister Shivpal Yadav accompanying Singh to the dais were all decided by Akhilesh.

Also, Mulayam wishing Singh but not mentioning him in his speech, while Akhilesh mentioned it, was also pre-planned by the UP CM.

The SP leadership was mulling over making Amar Singh the Chairman of UP  Development Council, a post which he held during Mulayam’s regime, but not giving him any post in the party. SP is also considering renominating Singh for the Rajya Sabha in November.

While the party has little to gain from the return of Singh, who is not considered a mass leader, but his re-induction would certainly help in management of SP’s affairs at the national level.

Party insiders also said the return of Amar Singh is also expected to have impacts on the power equations within the SP. Akhilesh’s uncle Ramgopal Yadav and minister Azam Khan are both on bitter terms with Singh. Also, Ramgopal and Azam are not on good terms with each other.

So, Singh might be a tool in Akhilesh’s hands to keep the ambitions of these two leaders under control.  The possible reinduction might make SP’s Rajya Sabha MP Jaya Bachchan uncomfortable as the veteran actress had deserted Singh after joining the party.

SP’s Thakur leaders, including Arvind Singh Gope, Om Prakash Singh and Yashwant Singh, who were known to be close to Amar Singh, but chose to desert him when he left SP reacted similarly.

Akhilesh played the masterstroke when he sat Raghuraj Pratap Singh alias Raja Bhaiyya next to him, probably to  send a message that Singh might return, but without much expectations.

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