In yet another snub to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, party state president Shivpal Yadav declared a merger with the tainted Quami Ekta Dal (QED) of mafia don-turned Mukhtar Ansari. The latter had merged with the Samajwadi Party in June, but it was soon called off when Akhilesh thought ot could mar his image.
The rejection of the merger at that time painted a new image of Akhilesh- a chief minister who fights the criminalisation of politics. However, with Shivpal joining hands with QED again, things don’t look to well in the Samajwadi Party.
While the Yadav family reiterates that there are no differences within the party, the announcement about the merger reflects otherwise.
Previously, Shivpal Yadav also gave the poll ticket to jailed Amarmani Tripathi’s son Amanmani, who is facing a CBI probe for allegedly killing wife Sara. To which the SP leader said, “Her (Sara’s) mother has not met me. When she does, I will look into it.”
Sara’s mother Seema Singh had yesterday met Mulayam to request him not to allot a poll ticket to Amanmani. Defending Amanmani, Yadav said, “The probe is on. The chargesheet will be filed in court. We should wait for that.”
With this merger, SP hopes to get additional Muslim votes in its kitty, particularly from the eastern districts of the state for the upcoming 2017 Assembly elections. Though the QED has only two MLAs — brothers Sigbatullah Ansari (Mohammadabad) and Mukhtar Ansari (Mau) — it has influence in pockets of Purvanchal — Ghazipur, Mau, Ballia and Varanasi.