Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has decided to break away from the ongoing family drama and embark on the more important election campaigning programme through the ‘Samajwadi Vikas Rath Yatra’ from November 3.
Shooting off a letter to his father and party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav on Wednesday, the chief minister said he has decided to go ahead with the Samajwadi Vikas Rath Yatra from November 3, which was earlier scheduled to begin from October 3. The letter, addressed to party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav merely informs him about his election campaign and is also addressed to Samajwadi Party state head and UP Cabinet minister Shivpal Singh Yadav and the party’s general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav.
Akhilesh Yadav, in his letter to the party chief, points out that the SP Vikas Rath Yatra was initially planned from October 3. It got delayed due to “certain reasons”. Therefore, he stated that without any further delay, he would proceed with the election campaign. The letter stated that the detailed schedule of his campaign would be shared with the district heads from time to time. The chief minister also lamented the time lost in starting the campaign as he pointed out that all major political parties have already launched their campaigns.
Interestingly, the party president has announced grand celebrations for the party’s silver jubilee anniversary on November 5. Though nothing has officially been said about Akhilesh Yadav boycotting the silver jubilee celebrations of the Samajwadi Party on November 5 in the state capital, by announcing that he would start on the rath yatra on November 3, Akhilesh has made it clear that he doesn’t want to be part of the celebrations.
The letter makes it clear that though efforts are being made to brush the family feud under the carpet, the split is in the open now and the CM has openly challenged the party high command, especially since a section of youth leaders of the Samajwadi Party, considered close to the chief minister, had on Tuesday virtually revolted against the party chief, saying they would boycott the silver jubilee celebrations of the party on November 5. These leaders were expelled by state party chief Shivpal Singh Yadav last month for allegedly raising slogans and protesting outside the house of Mulayam Singh Yadav.
According to political observers, the ongoing power struggle in the ruling party will hamper the Yadav family in the 2017 UP polls as it clearly reflects the ongoing strife between the Yadav clan. The letter is written in his official capacity as the chief minister and not as a party worker, which indicates he is trying to assert his position, and secondly, Akhilesh has merely sought to “inform” his father, which is not in line with SP’s traditions where Mulayam Singh Yadav’s nod is sought before taking decisions.