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Amid ruckus, rift in SP comes out in open

Notably, Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party of Om Prakash Rajbhar also kept away from the protest during the Governor's address. Rajbhar, who is an ally of the Samajwadi Party, did not join the SP members in the protest.

Anandiben Patel, Samajwadi Party, UP Legislative Assembly, Abdullah Azam Khan, Indian Express, India news, current affairs, Indian Express News Service, Express News Service, Express News, Indian Express India NewsAssembly Speaker Satish Mahana administers MLA’s oath to Azam Khan and his son Abdullah in Lucknow on Monday. Vishal Srivastav

As Samajwadi Party members protested during Governor Anandiben Patel’s speech to the joint sitting of the UP Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council on Monday, cracks in the main opposition party came to the fore.

Senior SP leader Azam Khan, who took the oath of MLA on Monday after he was released on bail last week, chose to skip the first day of the Assembly proceedings. His son and SP MLA from Suar, Abdullah Azam Khan, attended the joint sitting but did not take part in the protests during the Governor’s address.

He and Shivpal Yadav, the SP MLA from Jaswantnagar, were seen seated quietly unfazed by the commotion around them as SP members, donning red caps, rushed to the well of the House to protest.

This created an uneasy situation in the Samajwadi Party benches as either some members were seen approaching the two leaders or they preferred to sit with them. However, soon they were interrupted by the new chief whip of the party Manoj Pandey, who asked them to join the protest and raise their placards.  But Pandey did not ask both Abdullah and Shivpal. While some followed Pandey’s instruction and picked up the placards, others decided to leave the two alone preferring not to be part of the infighting between the party.

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Notably, Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party of Om Prakash Rajbhar also kept away from the protest during the Governor’s address. Rajbhar, who is an ally of the Samajwadi Party, did not join the SP members in the protest.

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When asked why his party did not join the protest, SBSP chief Om Prakash Rajbhar said, “Firstly, the Governor is a woman and secondly this old tradition to protest during the Governor’s address should change. Our party did not consider this protest necessary, so we did not protest.”

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On being asked about the SP’s protest, Rajbhar said, “I am not ‘malik’ (head) of all parties. I head my party only.”

When asked whether his party will be leaving the alliance with the SP, Rajbhar said, “This question does not arise.”

– With PTI

First published on: 24-05-2022 at 06:15:02 am
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