Two days before he becomes the Uttar Pradesh chief minister, Akhilesh Yadav has cracked the whip on overzealous party workers, hinting at a complete makeover of the Samajwadi Party.
While suspending a party secretary, Rajeev Rai, and seeking an explanation on his "anti-party activities and overboard statements", Yadav made it clear that only Rajendra Chowdhary was authorised to issue a statement on behalf of the party.
This, close aides said, was necessiated after several partymen had started speaking on behalf of the party and "had tried to project themselves as close to Akhilesh Yadav".
With little administrative grinding in the past, Akhilesh Yadav is relying heavily on his father and party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav for selection of officers and "understanding the bureaucracy".
A close aide of Mulayam Singh Yadav said a "process had begun to find out good, bipartisan officials who will be posted at important posts other than party's loyal officials".
Akhilesh Yadav, before flying to New Delhi on economy class, ordered officials to remove the huge hoardings that had mushroomed in the state capital overnight.
The hoardings, congratulating Mulayam Singh Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav, was put up by party leaders and some contractors in a bid to try and project themselves as close buddies of Akhilesh.
Plastered across the city, right from chief minister's residence at Kalidas Marg to the busy thoroughfares of Hazratganj, the posters raised the hackles of the common people who feared that such overdrive was suggestive of a return of the bad days of the Samajwadi Party.
Informed sources said that Akhilesh Yadav had deputed two senior leaders to oversee the removal of the hoardings.
A missive was sent Sunday night to the Lucknow Municipal Corporation (LMC). By Monday morning, most hoardings had been ripped off.
LMC additional city commissioner PK Srivastava told IANS that more than 5,000 small and big hoardings had been removed by Sunday night and the remaining too would go.
The municipal corporation has decided to slap fines and notices on whoever puts up hoardings.