“I had advised the ministers. Some mended their ways but some did not. If earning money is your priority, then you should rather do business. Even I would have helped you. In politics, people give you money on their own,” Mulayam said while addressing party workers to celebrate former Bihar chief minister Karpoori Thakur’s birth anniversary at SP office on Sunday.
“Mata Prasad Pandey (Assembly Speaker) is sitting here. He used to spread a bedsheet to collect money… people gave lakhs… I also did the same and there was so much that it took four days to count,” he added.
Recalling that he had faced several allegations, including that he was associated with dacoits, Mulayam said: “Some claimed that I had links with Chaviram gang, some claimed that I had links with Madho Singh and Phulan gang… Even dacoits at times do good work.”
He claimed that while Man Singh, a former dacoit, had helped the poor, the rich had sent him to jail. “Later, his son Tehsildar Singh contested against me. Many goondas contested against me but people are very intelligent and they defeated every one,” he said.
Maintaining that people know everything, the SP chief said that “as we are celebrating Karpoori Thakur’s birth anniversary, people working in the fields are aware of development (taking place)”. He went on to caution Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav to stay alert about those who indulge in backbiting. “I told him to listen to these people but do not act,” he said.
Mulayam also recalled his journey towards forming the SP. “I was alone and went ahead. The media reported that I was the leader of (only) three districts — Etawah, Farrukhabad and Mainpuri. But we formed government in 1993,” he said, reiterating that he is sad that 16 people had died in the 1990 police firing on kar sewaks in Ayodhya during the Babri Masjid demolition.
Recalling his association with Karpoori Thakur, Mulayam praised his simplicity. “He used to wear two kurtas during winters. He always ate and slept with poorest person in the village. When he died, he had a kuchcha house and his family did not have money to hold his terehvi,” he said, adding that SP workers should follow Thakur’s ideals for achieving success in politics.