The ongoing feud in the Samajwadi Party turned more bitter today — when a nameplate bearing Akhilesh Yadav’s name and designation as party’s national president was placed right under party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav’s nameplate with the same designation at the party office in Lucknow. The development not only added to the confusion over the post but also amply indicated that battlelines are drawn and an all-out war has broken out between the two factions led by the father-son duo, respectively.
The fresh controversy — and the photograph of the nameplates — started doing the rounds even as the Election Commission is yet to decide on who is the party’s national president and the ownership of the symbol of bicycle. Both factions have argued their case and apparently made a show of majority. The EC verdict is likely to come any time today.
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But seemingly Akhilesh supporters have become restive and not willing to wait any longer now that the elections are weeks away. Whether the move to install the new nameplate at party office had UP CM’s go-ahead or not is not known.
And if party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav’s statements earlier in the day are any indication, it seems a split in the party is inevitable and Mulayam now looks resigned to fate. In a meeting at SP office with party workers, the SP veteran said “he had called Akhilesh two-three times but he did not even listen to him”. Later, he scaled up the attack and called UP CM a “Muslim baiter” and said he will fight against his son if he did not listen to him.
Akhilesh was declared SP’s national president at a convention attended by UP Chief Minister’s loyalists and a majority of MLAs and MLCs earlier this month. Mulayam had called the action “unconstitutional” and refused to acknowledge Akhilesh’s claim to the position. In some time, however, Mulayam started making efforts at reconciliation and even went on to declare Akhilesh as chief ministerial candidate while underlining that he will not let the Samajwadi Party split. Those efforts now seem to have gone in vain.