While Samajwadi Party (SP) president Mulayam was Saturday wooing Brahmins at a conference of party’s intellectual cell at Indira Gandhi Pratishthan, barely a km away, his son and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav was cosying up to Muslims during a conference of minorities at Sangeet Natak Academy auditorium.
“Hum zyada rajniti karengey nahi. I have told it to Mata Prasad Pandey (Vidhan Sabha Speaker) and Ashok Bajpaye (party leader), I only want that such a government should be formed in Delhi in which SP has an important role. If this (intellectual) section wishes, it can happen,” Mulayam told the gathering of Brahmins.
The party’s brahmin sabha has been rechristened intellectual cell and is headed by Cabinet minister Manoj Pandey.
Aware of the composition of the audience that comprised mostly Brahmins, Mulayam said: “You people have saved the culture and civilisation of the country.
You never changed your religion. You also never tolerated wrong things and one can take inspiration from Parshuram ji who picked up farsa (weapon) for fighting injustice,” Mulayam stated.
As Mulayam reached the venue, Brahmins blew conch shells, a tilak was applied on his forehead and a farsa made of gold and silver presented to him.
Mulayam’s pro-Brahmin decisions —like declaration of holiday on Parshuram’s birth anniversary, opposing promotion in reservation, decision to provide subsidy to Mansarovar pilgrims and aid to Sanskrit schools, etc — were highlighted during the meeting.
Mulayam targeted the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), claiming that its leader had given derogatory slogans and openly claimed that brahmins and upper caste people should leave her meetings. “Still, you people defeated me and they won. I wondered what happened,” he said.
While Mulayam was wooing Brahmins, Akhilesh was trying to win over Muslims in another programme.
“The SP will never lag behind in giving respect to Muslims. We are even contesting in the Supreme Court and High Court,” Akhilesh said in reference to its decision to revoke terror cases that has been stayed by the court.
Akhilesh admitted he was not aware that the Muzaffarnagar riots would assume such a huge proportion. “We did our best to control it. Now the Supreme Court is monitoring it and we have presented our side,” he said.
In an veiled attack on BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Akhilesh said “there are some powers which know they can’t compete with the Samajwadi Party government, hence they tried to outdo us in rallies. But they were unsuccessful”.
“A baba from Gorakhpur was going to Jhansi to foment trouble. We alighted him from train and sent him to Delhi. Small incidents at several places as Ferozabad are given communal colour,” Akhilesh said at the event attended by Muslim clerics, intellectuals, educationists and politicians from various districts, including UP health minister Ahmad Hasan.
Underlining contributions of the SP government, he said “Muallims were protesting for nearly 16 years and even went to the Supreme Court, but didn’t get any relief. But our government gave employment to thousands of muallims.”
He also cited that a marketing hub will come up at Mau and another one of international standard in Lucknow while a Haj House, which was reportedly stopped by the previous regime, will be constructed at the cost of Rs 35 crore in Ghaziabad.
During the SP’s intellectual cell meeting, a group of anganwadi workers raised slogans thus disturbing the programme. First Manoj Pandey went to meet them and later two workers were invited on stage to meet Mulayam. Another group of Ayush doctors also tried to disrupt the programme and minister Manoj Pandey threatened them to remain silent, else they will be thrown out.
Speaking on the sidelines of the event, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav said that “bantware se kabhi laabh nahi hota, (division never helps),” in the context of division of Andhra Pradesh.