Yadav family feud: Akhilesh meets SP MLAs, speaks to Mulayam; suspense over next step
The feud in Uttar Pradesh’s ruling Yadav family appeared to be worsening, with chief minister Akhilesh Yadav on Thursday meeting legislators who have not found a place in the Samajwadi Party’s (SP’s) list of 325 candidates and then conveying objections to his father Mulayam Singh Yadav.
Akhilesh may announce his own list of candidates for the upcoming state elections, PTI quoted a party legislator as saying after the CM’s meeting with those denied tickets. But there were contradictory reports. Some sources said there won’t be any such list soon.
The chief minister has asked legislators who have not got tickets to go their constituencies and start campaigning, the sources said, adding the leader has assured that he will try to arrange tickets for them.
Hectic political activities began in the morning with party leaders gathering outside the residences of Akhilesh and SP supremo Mulayam. A big crowd assembled outside the residence of Shivpal Yadav, who has been locked in a bruising fight for control of the party with nephew Akhilesh.
Akhilesh, clearly upset over being apparently kept out of the process to select candidates for the polls, met at 5-Kalidas Marg residence in Lucknow with his supporters, including legislators and office bearers who do not figure in the list, party sources said.
Later, he spoke to Mulayam to convey his displeasure over the list of candidates from which names of his close confidants are missing, the sources said.
Mulayam, along with his brother and state party chief Shivpal, declared candidates for 325 of the 403 assembly seats on Wednesday and ruled out projecting Akhilesh as the chief ministerial candidate. Akhilesh was away on Bundelkhand tour when the list was released at a hurriedly-convened press conference.
The list, which includes 176 sitting MLAs, announced by Mulayam and Shivpal in the absence of Akhilesh, has left out several pro-Akhilesh ministers, including Ram Govind Chaudhary, Pawan Pandey and Arvind Singh Gope, and does not carry names of over 50 sitting MLAs.
Besides, 10 ministers, including Shivpal, sacked by the chief minister over the past few months have got tickets. These former ministers were in open defiance of Akhilesh and it paid off.
Within hours after release of the list, which clearly bore the stamp of Mulayam and Shivpal, Akhilesh had said he would take up the choice of candidates with the party chief.
“The list does not include names of certain candidates who are sure to win. I will take it up with the SP chief and tell him that some of them have done really good work and they should be given tickets,” an upset Akhilesh had said last night.
In a late night tit-for-tat action, the chief minister struck back sacking two Shivpal loyalists -- Surabhi Shukla, vice-chairperson of UP Awas Vikas Parishad and her husband Sandeep Shukla from the post of advisor of Rajkiya Nirman Nigam. Sandeep has been fielded from Sultanpur Sadar seat.