There is a flurry of action outside 7 Kalidas Marg, Shivpal Singh Yadav’s residence. His reinstatement as SP’s Uttar Pradesh president, after a feud with CM Akhilesh Yadav, has set the ‘cycle’ running again. At 5.45pm, a puffy-eyed Shivpal walks in for an interview with HT. He has had a siesta after an action-packed day.
Is your party headed for a split?
(Looks surprised) Why? When all issues have been settled, and both I and Akhilesh are going to abide by Netaji’s directives, there is no question of any split. We all have a common mission of forming the government after polls.
Who will be SP’s CM face?
As far as I am concerned Akhilesh is chief minister and will be CM after the elections. He has done good work and we all want him to return as CM.
Have you discussed this with Netaji? What if he disagrees?
This is my wish. He (Mulayam) can scold me.
You have expelled youth wing leaders today.
Enthusiasm is fine, but discipline too is important. I had informed him (Akhilesh) beforehand. There are party workers associated with all of us and they must abide by Netaji’s decisions.
What about the role of outsiders in escalating the feud?
We all have outsiders around us. One should use their brains to handle them.
Why is the state president’s post so important?
The powers of the chairman of state parliamentary board, which recommends tickets to the national parliamentary board, vests with the state presidents. He appoints office bearers. CM will be member of the state parliamentary board and will be consulted. Netaji will take the final call.
What is the genesis of the crisis that engulfed the party?
It all started on August 14 in Mainpuri. Some (party) post holders started indulging in malpractices, some were related to my departments and the officials were not taking action. I had complained to CM. Had he acted as state president and taken action against them, things would not have snowballed to this proportion. Instead, some of them became MLC.
What are your plans on Qaumi Ekta Dal (QED) or alliances with other parties like RLD of Ajit Singh?
QED will soon merge with SP. We want gandhivaadis, charanvaadis (followers of Charan Singh) and lohiavaadis (Ram Manohar Lohia) to join hands.