The Samajwadi Party on Sunday extended support to Ajit Singh’s campaign for declaring a Tughlaq Road bungalow, formerly occupied by the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) chief, as memorial to his father and ex-PM Chaudhary Charan Singh.
The announcement came after RLD national general secretary Jayant Chaudhary, former MP and son of Ajit Singh, met UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav at his residence in Lucknow to invite him to “Kisan Swabhiman Rally” on October 12 in Meerut. The rally has been called by Ajit Singh to put pressure on the NDA government for converting the bungalow into a memorial in the honour of the socialist leader. The invitation to Akhilesh came in his capacity as the state president of Samajwadi Party.
“The CM has told them that the SP is committed to the ideology of Chaudhary Charan Singh and has been implementing his policies. The SP is in favour of both a memorial for Charan Singh as well as Bharat Ratna for Charan Singh,” said Rajendra Chaudhary, SP spokesperson and state cabinet minister.
Rajendra Chaudhary, who was present during the meeting, said, “SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav has a lot of respect for Charan Singh and has worked to take forward his ideology by continuous struggle for prosperity of villages and villagers.” He, however, maintained that the support should not be seen as the confirmation of participation of Akhilesh or his father Mulayam Singh in the programme.
RLD spokesperson Anil Dubey, who was also part of the meeting along with RLD state president Munna Singh Chauhan, told The Indian Express, “Jayantji met the CM to invite him for the October 12 rally in Meerut… The meeting has been very positive and we are hopeful that he would come.”
Dubey said that while Akhilesh Yadav has assured of his presence, “Bihar CM Jeetan Ram Manjhi, former Bihar CM Nitish Kumar, Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda, JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav have already given their consent.” He said that RJD chief Lalu Prasad has also been invited to the rally.
Ajit Singh evicted the bungalow, weeks after civic authorities in New Delhi disconnected water and power supply to the house as the RLD leader did not comply with the eviction notice served to him. He had been staying in the bungalow for 36 years.
Activists of RLD and Bhartiya Kisan Union have been protesting for several weeks in and around New Delhi against the eviction notice served to Ajit Singh.
The campaign is seen as an attempt by Ajit Singh to revive support for his party.