A day after Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav tore into each other, showing deep chasms within the family and Samajwadi Party, party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav on Tuesday tried to project an ‘all is well’ image even though he could not commit whether his brother Shivpal would be reinstated in the cabinet of son Akhilesh who had sacked him.
The “party and family are united”, he said here at a press conference where he was flanked by Shivpal and three other sacked ministers, while the chief minister was conspicuous by his absence.
While emphasising that Akhilesh remains chief minister, his father made it clear that a second term is not a given if the party wins the election. “First give us a majority and then we will see,” said Mulayam. He also said that the last state election, after which Akhilesh was made chief minister, “was fought on my name”.
Outside the state SP headquarters, tension once again ran high with followers of Shivpal and Akhilesh raising slogans in favour of their respective leaders. While Akhilesh’s supports sought that he be unequivocally named as the party’s chief minister face for the coming Assembly elections, Shivpal’s supports demanded his re-inclusion in the cabinet as a minister.
“My entire life is devoted for the welfare of the people and he will continue to work for them,” he said. “My family and party are united. All workers are united. There are some conspirators, who do not have any mass base,” Mulayam told a hurriedly convened press conference.