Is the Samajwadi Party (SP) nudging Mulayam Singh Yadav’s younger son Prateek into contesting an election just as it did in the case of Dimple?
A group of nearly four dozen party workers and village pradhans from Azamgarh reached the party office in Lucknow on Saturday to petition the party’s national president Mulayam Singh Yadav to field Prateek from the Azamgarh Lok Sabha constituency.
Curiously, the spot used by them to voice their demand and raise pro-Prateek slogans was the same as the one which had witnessed the demand to field Dimple in electoral politics in May.
This was the second time the party office witnessed sloganeering for Prateek. The last time was in April when Dimple’s candidature for the Kannauj bypolls had not been announced. What is more, Prateek’s facebook account had showed a picture of that day’s event.
However, a party source at that time had said Dimple would contest the Kannauj by-polls, while Prateek would be fielded for a ‘high victory potential’ seat in the 2014 Lok Sabha election.
When the Samajwadi Party announced its first list of candidates for the 2014 Lok Sabha election recently, there was speculation that the party had selected Azamgarh for Prateek.
But in the second list announced on November 19, Akhilesh’s cabinet member Balram Yadav was declared the candidate for the seat.
“We had expected Prateek to be fielded. We wanted someone from Netaji’s family in Azamgarh for the development of the district,” said a member of the group of demonstrators.
“No, we are not against anyone’s candidature. We are not protesting (against Balram Yadav). We are demanding Prateek,” said another member.
While raising slogans, the group said nothing against Balram Yadav. Also, their ‘petition’ did not mention Prateek’s name anywhere.
But the last line of the memorandum (addressed to Mulayam) did say: “Only a member of the Yadav family can sort out problems of the area (Azamgarh).”
The situation seems to be similar to the one that prevailed prior to Dimple’s candidature for the Kannauj by-polls was announced.
In May, some party workers from Kannauj took out a cycle rally in her favour and raised slogans on reaching the party office in Lucknow.
Some days later, the party announced that based on the demands of the party workers and the people of the constituency, it had decided to field Dimple. She was elected unopposed.