Mulayam starts damage control mission in UP

Mulayam starts damage control mission in UP

Exercise to create goodwill among communities

Mulayam starts damage control mission in UP

Apparently wary of a possible Muslim backlash as well as dent in its ‘secular image’ in the wake of Muzaffarnagar riots, Samajwadi Party, in damage control exercise, will observe a ‘Sadbhavana Week’ beginning from Wednesday.

The week-long exercise was aimed at ‘creating goodwill’ among the various communities and promoting communal amity keeping in line with the composite culture of Uttar Pradesh, according to the SP leaders here.

The exercise had been launched on the instruction of the party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav.

“Ours is a secular party. We want that the people of every community should live in peace and harmony. Mulayam Singh has directed us to observe Sadbhavana Week so that an environment of trust may again be built among various communities,” SP leader Rajendra Chaudhary here said.

During the exercise, which will culminate on October 2, the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the party will hold meetings, seminars and other programmes in which members of both the communities would take part, he said.

The opposition BJP and Congress ridiculed the exercise.

“SP leaders have been accused of provoking the riots. They should be punished before any such exercise is observed,” said BJP leader Vijay Bahadur Pathak.

“The SP first breaks communal amity and then launches exercise to promote the same,” said Congress leader Dwijendra Tripathi.

The recent communal violence in Muzaffarnagar and in some other adjoining districts that claimed around 50 lives had come as a severe setback to Mulayam.

He is has been facing heat not only from the Muslim clerics, but also from the Muslim leaders of his own party.

Senior minister and party’s general secretary Azam Khan made no bones about his feelings when he squarely blamed the district administration for the communal flare-up.

The Muslim leaders of the party feel that if the SP fails to win back the confidence of the community, its dream to win 40-45 seats in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections would remain a ‘dream’ only.

Muslims, who constitute around 20 per cent of UP’s electorate, play a decisive role in around 25 Lok Sabha seats in the state.

If Mulayam were to nurture any dream of occupying the country’s top post, their role would be very crucial.

VHP seeks proper probe

Asserting that it has no faith in CBI probe, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad on Tuesday demanded a thorough inquiry under the supervision of Supreme Court into all incidents of communal violence that took place in various parts of UP during the SP rule, reports PTI.

“We have no faith in CBI probe. Not only Muzaffarnagar violence, but inquiry into all the riots during the rule of SP government should be conducted under the supervision of Supreme Court,” VHP leader Swami Chinmayanand said here.

Accusing UP minister Azam Khan and his associates of inciting communal passions in Muzaffarnagar, Chinmayanand demanded a case against the SP leader and his dismissal from the Uttar Pradesh cabinet.

“One-sided cases were lodged (in connection with Muzaffarnagar violence) and arrests were made. Even a non-political organisation like Bhartiya Kisan Union was not spared,” he said.

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