Lucknow: The Yadav family in Uttar Pradesh is now facing trouble from within.
If sources are to be believed, all is not well in the family and this is the reason why Samajwadi patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav and SP president Akhilesh Yadav have not campaigned in the by-elections in Azamgarh even though both have held the seat in the past. Akhilesh's cousin Dharmendra Yadav is contesting the seat and is being challenged by Dinesh Lal Yadav Nirahua of BJP and Guddu Jamali of BSP.
The contest is not easy and even a slight diversion of votes could affect the outcome. A senior party leader, who spoke to IANS on condition of anonymity, said, "I do not understand why Akhilesh has not campaigned in Azamgarh even though he won the seat in 2019. He should have focussed on campaigning because this by-election is a prestige issue for us." Party sources say that there is no valid reason for Akhilesh not to campaign in his own erstwhile constituency and that too, when his own cousin is the candidate.
"This is a clear indication that all is not well in the family. The fissures that appeared when Aparna Yadav joined the BJP earlier this year, seem to be growing by the day," a party functionary said.
The family is also facing trouble since Akhilesh's estranged uncle Shivpal Yadav has now started speaking out against his nephew and is determined to strengthen his own party (Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party Lohia), which means that he will move out of SP, sooner than later.
On Tuesday, when most partymen expected Akhilesh to go to Azamgarh since this is the last day of campaign, the SP chief chose to go to Kannauj instead. Surprisingly, senior SP leader Mohd Azam Khan has not only been campaigning vigorously in his constituency Rampur but has even campaigned for Dharmendra Yadav in Azamgarh. Sources said that Azam Khan has set aside his health issues and is making all efforts to ensure that the party retains the Rampur seat, which is a matter of prestige for him. Azam Khan's associate Asim Raja is the party candidate from Rampur. —IANS