With an eye on Muslim votes and to counter Congress’s ‘generosity’ towards Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), Samajwadi Party (SP) president Mulayam Singh Yadav will be attending a seminar to be held on AMU campus on February 24.
The seminar is being organised in support of the demand for minority status of AMU. This will be the first visit by the SP leadership after Akhilesh Yadav took over as UP Chief Minister in 2012.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi was invited as chief guest of the 2013 convocation, which she could not attend. She had also laid the foundation stone of Kishanganj centre of AMU on January 30. Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi interacted with AMU students in 2008.
President Pranab Mukherjee will inaugurate the Murshidabad campus of AMU on February 20. The President has attended two programmes of AMU in December last year.
“Netaji (Mulayam) has agreed to attend the seminar as chief guest. Several other Muslim intelligentsia will participate in the event,” an SP leader and organiser of the event, Khalid Masood, said .
Masood is a former president of AMU’s students union (AMUSU). Several former student leaders of AMU are in SP. The outgoing president of AMUSU Shehzad Alam, joined the SP recently.
Azam Khan, who is also a former office-bearer of AMUSU, is not part of the programme. “Only Mulayam and no other political leader is coming,” Masood said. He said AMU Vice-Chancellor Lt Gen Zameeruddin Shah is also not part of the event.