Don't lose SP's identity for Janata Parivar: SP leaders tell Mulayam

Don't lose SP's identity for Janata Parivar: SP leaders tell Mulayam

Don't lose SP's identity for Janata Parivar: SP leaders tell Mulayam

The Samajwadi Party must focus on on retaining power in the 2017 Uttar Pradesh elections and put plans on emerging as a national player through the Janata Parivar on the backburner for the time being.

This is the message two senior party leaders gave to Mulayam Singh Yadav just before the SP decided to quit the grand alliance in Bihar over seat-sharing issues.

Highly placed sources in the party ruling Uttar Pradesh said Ram Gopal Yadav and Mohd Azam Khan were of the view that concentrating on defeating BJP and BSP in next year's Assembly polls should be the focus of SP, which would not be possible by being part of a larger alliance.

They are learnt to have told Mulayam that SP cannot afford to lose its identity in the process as it could mean compromising its Yadav-Muslim votebank.

The sources said the two leaders succeeded in convincing Mulayam that aspirations of emerging as a big player in Parliament by becoming part of the Janata Parivar would serve little purpose at this moment.

The SP had suffered a major loss in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls when it could win only five seats as BJP swept the state.

The two leaders are understood to have told Mulayam that as the Janata Parivar took longer than expected to come together, now the SP supremo should only work on winning the Assembly polls.

The term of the UP Assembly ends on May 27, 2017.
At a recent meeting of SP's office bearers, Mulayam had said that the party would meet with an electoral disaster if the "present state of affairs" continued.

"I was told that if Vidhan Sabha elections are held today, the party would lose," Mulayam had said, stunning everyone at a meeting of the party's state executive and office-bearers of district units.

Despite Mulayam's continued reluctance to assure them that SP will return to the grand alliance, JD(U) President Sharad Yadav and RJD chief Lalu Prasad are still hopeful that they would be able to salvage the nascent coalition.

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