Knives out in SP over Azam Khan issue

Senior Samajwadi Party (SP) leader and general secretary Azam Khan’s absence at the two-day national executive committee meeting at Agra, which concluded on Thursday, has not gone down well with the party leadership. The SP could take action against the firebrand leader.

While SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav downplayed Khan’s absence and said his concerns would be addressed, many senior leaders came down heavily on Khan. “Azam Khan can never be angry with me,” Mulayam said. Knives were out in the party over Khan, known to be outspoken, with many senior SP leaders slamming him for skipping an important party meeting and said his conduct amounted to indiscipline.

SP general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav said: “Though it does not matter if some leader does not attend the meeting, it is not good, I think if a leader cannot act in a responsible manner. He should resign from his post.” Ram Gopal said that Khan had harmed his own stature by not attending the meeting.

Senior SP leader Abu Azami also lashed out at Khan. “No one is above Mulayam Singh in SP. Action should be taken against those who behave in an irresponsible manner,” Azami said.

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