States & UTs

    Tension Continues Within SP's First Family

    April20/ 2022
    Last Updated:

    Lucknow: The convention of Samajwadi Party will decide whether the row within the party's first family would continue or the party would focus on its substantive agenda of taking on its prime adversary — the BJP. The two-day national convention of Samajwadi Party will be held in Agra from October 4. All eyes are on whether SP patron Mulayam Singh Yadav will attend the national convention or not. "Time is running out for SP chief Akhilesh Yadav. He has to decide who is his prime enemy, his father Mulayam Singh Yadav, whom he toppled from the post of party national president, his uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav whom he pushed to the margins or Prime Minister Narendra Modi," quipped a senior SP leader who is set to stay away from the Agra convention. Though Mr Akhilesh met his father on Friday last and invited him to the Agra convention, the SP chief remains in a state of war with the family ever since he nudged Netaji (Mulayam) to occupy the top post of SP on January 1. But no such invitation was extended to uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav, the party MLA from Etawah. The issue rattling the rank and file of the SP is not the feud within the first family but the lack of concern within the first family to resolve the dispute and end the deadlock. "The feud in SP's first family is a festering wound. Mr Akhilesh seems to be little concerned about it and is confident that he can steer the party in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls without setting his house in order. The intra-party feud has already caused immense damage to the party in the 2017 UP Assembly polls and it continues to erode the credibility and image of the party," the SP leader said. The common refrain among SP leaders is that the onus for ending the stalemate in party's first family lies on Mr Akhilesh and not Mr Mulayam or his younger brother Shivpal. "Mulayam Singh Yadav and Shivpal Yadav are past their prime and they are not the future of the party. Their dormant presence in the SP or their floating of a new party could damage Akhilesh as he is the future of the party. The stakes for Akhilesh are high and hence it is his responsibility to end the deadlock. For this, he should gather courage and conviction and show sagacity to settle the family dispute," the SP leader said. "Mulayam Singh Yadav has not forgotten the humiliation heaped on him by his son on January 1 this year when Akhilesh took over as SP national president. The SP patron has not given up and keeps on reminding Akhilesh about his promise of handing over party reins to him after the Assembly polls," he added. Referring to the September 25 press conference of Mr Mulayam , the party leader said that the SP patron conveyed a categorical message to Mr Akhilesh. "Mulayam blessed his son Akhilesh and not the SP president. He also reminded his son about the comment made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during Assembly poll campaign that one who was not loyal to his father could never be loyal to anybody. To further press his point, Mulayam said that he was not in agreement with the political decisions taken by Akhilesh as the SP chief," the SP leader pointed out. "Mulayam also reiterated that Akhilesh had promised to hand over the party reins to him after Assembly polls, a promise he failed to honour and added that people who were not true to their words never gained credibility or success in public life," he said. Generally speaking, no SP leader was willing to speak on record as the matter concerned the party's first family. Party leaders were almost unanimous that too much water had flown down the Ganga since Akhilesh took over as the SP president. "It would be more than a miracle if Akhilesh agrees to abdicate the party throne for his father Mulayam Singh," a SP leader commented. UNI

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