Lucknow Confidential: The Chosen Seathttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/lucknow/samajwadi-party-akhilesh-yadav-azam-khan-wife-tazeen-fatma-up-assembly-bypolls-6079534/

Lucknow Confidential: The Chosen Seat

A section of senior leaders from the Samajwadi Party are not happy with party chief Akhilesh Yadav’s decision to campaign only for Azam Khan’s wife Tazeen Fatma in the Assembly bypolls.

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Akhilesh Yadav

A section of senior leaders from the Samajwadi Party are not happy with party chief Akhilesh Yadav’s decision to campaign only for Azam Khan’s wife Tazeen Fatma in the Assembly bypolls. He seemingly did not entertain requests from the 10 other candidates of the party. The “partial behaviour” has left many SP leaders flustered. It was not only brickbats for the SP chief. Another group says that Akhilesh has taken the “correct decision” because the Rampur seat is the only one among the 11 seats held by the SP and that it is important to send out a message that “Akhilesh is with Azam in this difficult time”. But others could not agree less with this reasoning and say the party had given up on the rest of the seats even before contesting on them.

A ‘Bad’ Call

Deputy Chief Minister Dinesh Sharma recently lost his temper after knowing that several newspapers and online portals ran stories on a puported ‘mobile phone ban’ in state universities and colleges. Although the story was later found to be false, within two days, it was widely shared on social media. The stories claimed that the order was issued by Higher Education Department Director Vandana Sharma. She clarified to Dinesh that no such order was issued and her casual conversation with someone was presented as an official order. Later, both the state government and the education department said students were expected not to use phones on campus, but that there was no such blanket ban. Sources informed that the government was planning to bring in a policy regarding online newsportals and its content. Before doing so, the government plans to first study similar policies in other states.

Two Sides

Amid its attempts towards revival, the Congress, which has got its new team recently in Uttar Pradesh, is struggling to keep its flock together. The appointment of young faces has not gone down well with senior leaders. Some of the leaders have already put in their papers, saying that the party hardly boasts of any recognisable face. During the reshuffle, state Congress leaders were told the party would need young leaders during protests against the policies of the government. Priyanka Gandhi is scheduled to address the newly elected committee members this week when the standoff between the ‘old and the new’ is likely to be raised. Leaders are waiting to see how she strikes a balance between the two and take everyone along ahead of the 2022 Assembly elections.