SP splits as Akhilesh dethrones father

Anoints himself as SP president Sanjay Pandey

SP splits as Akhilesh dethrones father

Six months after a bitter turf war in the family, the Samajwadi Party (SP) has
finally split.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Sunday dethroned his father and party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav in a ‘political coup’ of sorts and anointed himself as SP’s national president at an emergency national convention of the party here.

Akhilesh’s anointment triggered an all-out war in the family and Mulayam hit back by expelling SP general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav, an Akhilesh supporter, from the party again and terming the convention and his removal “unconstitutional”.

Mulayam also convened an emergency national convention of the party here on Thursday to “ensure” that there was no “confusion” among  the public.

Earlier in the day, the national convention unanimously adopted four resolutions, that included electing Akhilesh as national president of the party, Mulayam as ‘margdarshak’ (mentor), removal of Shivpal Singh Yadav as state unit chief and expulsion of SP Rajya Sabha MP Amar Singh.

An emotional Akhilesh said that there was a “conspiracy” by some people to “finish” the party and vowed to defeat “such forces”. “People (read Shivpal) brought typewriter from their residence to type my expulsion letter,” he said.

He said that he would “respect” Mulayam “more than before”. “Netaji (Mulayam) is my father...no one can come between our relationship....I will make any sacrifice to save the party and the family,” he added.

Akhilesh, apparently explaining the hurry in removing Mulayam and Shivpal, and expelling Amar Singh, said that the next three-four months were “crucial” for the party and apprehended that Mulayam could have been forced to do something that would have harmed the SP.

“Na jane kaun milke kya faisla karwa le...kya type karwa le,” (Netaji may be forced to take decisions by some one), he said, apparently referring to Shivpal and Amar Singh.

Ram Gopal, who moved the resolutions, said that two persons had been behind the “conspiracy” to damage the SP. “These two did not want SP to return to power,” he said.

Ram Gopal said that the Assembly polls nominees were selected without the approval of the Parliamentary Board. He also said that the resolutions would be sent to the Election Commission (EC) for necessary action.

Almost all Mulayam loyalists, legislators and ministers, and office bearers from different states were present at the convention, clearly signaling that Akhilesh had the numbers.

A little later, Mulayam hit back expelling Ram Gopal, which was third in two months. He also called the convention and the resolutions “unconstitutional”.

“Some people have been humiliating me to hide their sins and benefit BJP in the polls,” he said.

Senior SP leaders, who attended Sunday’s convention, urged Mulayam to “understand” the ground reality. “No one has the authority to expel Ram Gopal,” said SP leader Naresh Agarwal.

SP vice president Kironmoy Nanda, veteran SP leader Reoti Raman Singh, more than 200 SP MLAs, including ministers, were present at the convention.

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