The morning after securing the Election Commission’s stamp on his claim as the national president of the Samajwadi Party, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav sought to soften the blow on his father and the party’s founder Mulayam Singh Yadav, insisting that there were never differences between them.
“My work and Netaji’s face would be the plank on which we will contest the polls,” he said.
“Relation with my father can never be broken. I never had any differences with him. In fact 90% candidates in our lists are identical.”
“I will take netaji (Mulayam) along...my relation with him is unbreakable,” he told reporters his official 5 Kalidas Marg residence in Lucknow.
And with an expected alliance with the Congress, Akhilesh said, “Give us some time. Candidates list and the announcement on alliance will be made in Lucknow.”
Akhilesh was talking to workers and supporters at his official residence. Sources said that the national general secretary of the party, Ramgopal Yadav will be in Lucknow later in the day to finalise the list of party candidates, which has been prepared in consultation with alliance partners.
Sources said that Akhilesh has told the party candidates for the first phase of the elections, nominations for which began on Tuesday, to wait till January 23 before filing their nominations. The last day of filing nominations for the first phase of polling is January 24.
“Now, I have a big responsibility to shoulder and my entire focus is now on winning the elections,” he said while addressing his supporters.