HIGHLIGHTS: Akhilesh re-elected SP chief for 5 years at party’s national convention

Akhilesh Yadav was re-elected party chief at the Samajwadi Party national convention in Agra.
Akhilesh Yadav waves from the stage at the Samajwadi Party national convention in Agra on Thursday.(HT Photo)
Akhilesh Yadav waves from the stage at the Samajwadi Party national convention in Agra on Thursday.(HT Photo)
Updated on Oct 06, 2017 12:42 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Agra | ByPankaj Jaiswal and Hemendra Chaturvedi

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav was unanimously re-elected as the party’s national president for a five-year term on Thursday at the party’s national convention in Agra.

The party’s constitution was amended to extend the tenure of the party chief to five years from the existing three years.

Mulayam and Shivpal gave the SP event a miss just as they had stayed away from the state executive meeting of the party in Lucknow on September 23. Akhilesh had personally invited his father for the national convention

Forty-four-year-old Akhilesh will remain at the helm for five years, the 2019 Lok Sabha and state Assembly elections in 2022 will be held under his presidentship.

In their speeches at the convention, several leaders pitched the party president as prime ministerial hope in the next general election.

Key Lok Sabha by-elections to be held in Gorakhpur and Phulpur (the seats vacated by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and his deputy Keshav Prasad Maurya) will give SP a chance to gauge which way the wind is blowing months after it faced a rout in the Assembly polls.

Akhilesh has already said if results of the elections were in “our favour, it will give a message not only for the 2019 (Lok Sabha polls), but also for the 2022 (assembly polls).

Akhilesh Yadav re-elected Samajwadi Party president at the party’s national convention in Agra on Thursday. (Hindustan Times)
Akhilesh Yadav re-elected Samajwadi Party president at the party’s national convention in Agra on Thursday. (Hindustan Times)


2.10pm: Closing speech by Akhilesh ends the tenth national convention of SP with adoption of both economic and political proposals placed.

2.05pm: Akhilesh says the current dispensation will not bring any development.

“BJP leaders have opium in their mouth and pockets. They may say things to sway the public. SP workers should stand with farmers, traders and poor in this time when they face crises after GST and demonetisation,” he says.

Targeting Modi, Akhilesh says, “He has not just destroyed Uttar Pradesh, he has ruined the economic growth of the entire country. He has lied to the poor for votes.”

“This is a government that stops work. It doesn’t care about history or anything else. They don’t understand history. First they had a problem with the expressway, then the river, now they have a problem with Taj Mahal.”

Akhilesh says the party will hold big rallies in days ahead and that SP will win maximum seats during 2019 elections.

1.50pm: Akhilesh Yadav takes the stage. Akhilesh says that CBI is kept in command by the Centre to threaten opposition parties.

“We are already in the CBI club but we not afraid of it and will fight,” he says.

1.25pm: Several party leaders speaking at the convention are pitching Akhilesh Yadav as prime ministerial candidate for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

1.10pm: We will unite and fight for state under leadership of party president Akhilesh Yadav, said Dimple Yadav.

1.08pm: Samajwadi Party MP and Akhilesh’s wife, Dimple Yadav takes the stage. “Netaji blessed Akhilesh and I believe he has blessed me and all the party leaders on this stage,” she says.

Dimple raises the issues of infant deaths at the Gorakhpur hospital and violence at the Banaras Hindu University. She targets the Yogi government for stopping all welfare schemes introduced by the Akhilesh Yadav regime.

1.00pm: Uncle Shivpal Yadav congratulates Akhilesh.

Akhilesh had said on Wednesday that his estranged uncle had blessed and congratulated him during a phone conversation. “I got the benefit of my age and our relation. He (Shivpal) gave me blessings and congratulated me also,” Akhilesh said.

The SP has witnessed a bitter feud between Akhilesh and Shivpal and this infighting adversely affected the party during the UP Assembly polls earlier this year.

12.40pm: Jaya Bachchan takes the stage and says, “I am proud that ours is a young leader who understands equality and progress. My only request to you is to give women in the party 10% reservation in the next election.”

12.29pm: Nanda says, “Today morning, over the phone, Netaji told me that he was unwell. But he was always in Samajwadi Party and will always be in it, and his blessings are always with Akhilesh.”

12.27pm: Nanda says, “They want to destroy democracy. We should throw out the Modi government.”

12.23pm: Vice president Kiranmoy Nanda calls Narendra Modi and Amit Shah the biggest villains in India.

A silver metal cycle gifted to Akhilesh Yadav by party workers on his re-election as national president on Thursday. (HT Photo)
A silver metal cycle gifted to Akhilesh Yadav by party workers on his re-election as national president on Thursday. (HT Photo)

12.13pm: Khan says, “They took meat from the fridge and decided what animal it was and took a man’s life. They eat with these killers, have tea with these killers.”

Addressing Akhilesh, Khan says, “Our hopes and demands are from you. Those afraid of CBI will not come to help you but Muslims will always stand behind you.”

12.06pm: Khan asks the party to learn from Bihar. “Lalu Yadav did not succumb the threats of the CBI and ED. They can be used against us but the fight must continue.”

“Remember, fascists, you cannot take Azam Khan and others to Pakistan. This is our country. You cannot send us away.”

Addressing the prime minister, he says, “Badshah, our votes change governments. Try taking our votes away.”

12.03pm: Khan says, “Akhilesh should be concerned about the Muslims in India. I know how heavy his heart must be because of the absence of the great neta (Mulayam) who should have been here.”

“There is no governance in UP. The people have no love for this government. It has done nothing in six months. Akhilesh should address the people’s issues.”

11.58am: “RSS and BJP dividing Hindus and Muslims. I am the most hated person in the country despite running university and taking up issues of the common man. They want to finish me. But I stayed at house of a Hindu last night with no threat to life. This is the greatness of India,” Khan says.

11.55am: “Oh Badshah (Narendra Modi), Honeypreet sent Ram Rahim to jail, your ‘money-preet’ will sink the country,” says Khan.

11.50am: “Our ideals are Ram and Krishna but Yogi should tell us whether Prophet Mohammad and Jesus Christ are also his ideals or not,” says Khan.

Khan also says that Mahatma Gandhi is our ideal but Nathuram Ghodse is only his killer.

11.45am: Khan says that a Badshah should not be a liar. “Gorakhpur mothers seek justice for death of their children.”

He refers to chief minister Yogi Adityanath as ‘Chote Badshah’ and questions claims that the “Mughals are not our ancestors.” He exhorts Adityanath to read history.

11.42am: Khan dubs the prime minister as ‘Badshah’ and says, “PM assured people of jobs and money in bank accounts but none of it manifested.”

11.40am: Khan says the history of the Samajwadi agitation is a major one and cannot be forgotten. “The Samajwadi ideology is alive to safeguard the Constitution.”

11.35am: Azam Khan recollects Mulayam Singh Yadav’s efforts in beginning the Samajwadi movement during tough times. “Netaji gave call for the movement after the demolition of Babri mosque on December 6, 1992 .”

11.31am: Party leader Azam Khan takes the stage and congratulates Akhilesh on his election.

11.25am: The national convention blows bugle for 2019 Lok Sabha polls preparation.

10.50am: Akhilesh says the current UP govt has cheated farmers with its loan waiver scheme.

10.45am: Akhilesh attacks BJP governments in UP and at the Centre over demonetisation and GST. He says demonetisation had halted traders’ business and GST finished them.

10.40am: Akhilesh says, “I had told Netaji (Mulayam) that if you come, we will be honoured. I had called him yesterday and today too. I told him, if you don’t bless us, we will not progress. Netaji blessed me over the phone today morning. Kiranmoy Nanda (the national vice president) too got blessings from Netaji today.”

10.35am: Samajwadi Party’s 10th national convention begins. SP national president Akhilesh Yadav opens the convention.

With agency inputs.

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