Samajwadi Party’s central parliamentary board met in Lucknow Sunday, but failed to reach a consensus on picking its new party leader in Rajya Sabha ahead of the forthcoming Winter Session. Board members later authorised Mulayam to take a decision on the matter.
SP sources confirmed that the meeting was called to decide the party’s new leader in Rajya Sabha and discuss new programmes launched by the state government in view of the forthcoming Assembly elections. Party chief Mulayam Singh’s cousin, Ram Gopal Yadav, who is the party’s leader in Rajya Sabha, was likely to be replaced after being expelled from the party last month. He has already been removed from party posts of general secretary and spokesperson.
However, sources added, that the party could not reach a consensus on selection of a new leader for Rajya Sabha as a section wants Ram Gopal to be taken back into the party. SP is third largest party in the Upper House with 19 members.
The meeting, which was held at SP’s state headquarters, was attended by Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and party state president Shivpal Yadav.
When asked about the matter, Shivpal, after the meeting said, “Neta ji (Mulayam) will take the decision on this in Delhi.” He added that it was also discussed that Mulayam’s public meetings will be held in all divisions and first such programme will be held in Ghazipur.
Rajya Sabha MP and SP’s national vice-president Kiranmoy Nanda said that no name was discussed Sunday for being selected as party’s leader in the Upper House. Instead, the party discussed the inconveniences that the general public, farmers and traders were facing due to recent demonetisation of currency.
Nanda added that SP will raise the issue of demonetisation of Rs 1000 and Rs 500 notes and the inconvenience caused to the people due to the decision.
“Common man is facing the inconvenience in daily life. SP is the party of the common man and hence we will raise the issue in Parliament,” Nanda said.
Shivpal added that the season for sowing of the Rabi crop had started and the farmers were not able to purchase seeds and fertilisers after the PM’s announcement.
He said that new currency notes had not reached rural banks and district cooperative banks, and demanded that farmers should be allowed to use Rs 1000 and Rs 500 notes to purchase seeds and fertilisers in the current Rabi crop season.
Shivpal, who is chairman of the management committee of the Etawah district cooperative bank, further said that cooperative banks and cooperative societies and other such bodies from where farmers purchase seeds, fertilisers and pesticides, should be allowed to accept these notes.
He said that Modi government should have taken opposition parties into confidence before taking the decision of demonetisation, adding that more relaxation should be given to the public.