Months after walking out of it, a faction-ridden Samajwadi Party (SP) today continued its efforts to stitch an alliance in Uttar Pradesh ahead of the Assembly election due early next year.
SP state unit chief Shivpal Yadav today met RLD chief Ajit Singh to invite him to the party’s 25th anniversary celebrations on November 5.
On Wednesday, Shivpal had called up Bihar Chief Minister and JD(U) leader Nitish Kumar and met his party’s senior leaders Sharad Yadav and KC Tyagi.
A weakened SP is now looking for an alliance to take on the BJP and the BSP in the Assembly polls. The difference between Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and party chief and his father Mulayam Singh Yadav has taken an ugly turn. While Mulayam, Shivpal and Amar Singh represent one camp within the party, Akhilesh has the support of Mulayam’s cousin Ram Gopal, who has been expelled from the party.
Carrying an invitation from Mulayam, Shivpal had been meeting “socialist friends” in the national capital.
Sources in the JD(U) and the SP said the idea behind the invite was to stitch an alliance in Uttar Pradesh, on the lines of Bihar, ahead of the polls.
An earlier attempt to stitch an alliance of “like-minded” parties had failed after the SP had backed out. Shivpal was involved in roping in the various constituents of the grand alliance till Mulayam himself decided to walk out of it months before the Bihar polls.
“I have come to invite Ajit Singh for SP’s foundation day. All the secular parties do not want the BJP to enter Uttar Pradesh. It is an effort to bring together all Lohiawadis and Charanwadis. If it succeeds, we will stop the BJP,” Shivpal told reporters after meeting the RLD chief.
On Wednesday, he had said that he had tried to form an alliance earlier too, but Ram Gopal Yadav did not allow it to happen “fearing the CBI”.
“RLD has welcomed the statement of Samajwadi Party leader Shivpal Yadav, calling for a coalition of parties against communal forces in Uttar Pradesh,” the party’s general secretary, Trilok Tyagi, said.
Asked about the alliance, he said, “No decision has been taken yet. RLD will consider the proposal before taking a call.”
He, however, said his party was “exhorting” all the ‘Lohia-ites’ to come together to fight the “communal forces”.
RLD had already announced a coalition with Janata Dal (United), Sharad Pawar-led NCP and ex-BSP leader RK Chaudhary’s BS4 for the crucial Uttar Pradesh polls.
The mega alliance, which was announced earlier this month, has projected Ajit Singh’s son and former Mathura MP Jayant Chaudhary as its chief ministerial candidate.