Akhilesh Yadav sacks five loyalists of uncle Shivpal, could escalate Samajwadi Party war

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LUCKNOW: Former Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh and Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav has opened a new front in the ongoing family feud by expelling five known loyalists of his uncle, Shivpal Yadav.
The five SP leaders who were expelled from the party for anti-party activities included party spokesman Deepak Mishra and Mohammad Shahid, the party spokesman for UP and Uttarakhand till the January 1 national convention where Akhilesh was made party chief in place of SP patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav.
Rajesh Yadav of Hardoi, Ramesh Yadav and Kallu Yadav of Noida were the other three members to be shown the door. “All five leaders have been expelled for indulging in anti-party activities and criticising the new leadership at public platforms,” said SP State chief Naresh Uttam.
Last week, Shivpal Yadav, SP MLA from Jaswantnagar, had blown the bugle against Akhilesh’s leadership and held it responsible for the party’s dismal performance in the recently concluded UP Assembly polls as the party’s tally dwindled to 47 from 229. He had also announced forming a new secular front involving like-minded State and national leaders under the presidentship of SP Mulayam Singh Yadav.
Shivpal Yadav had reminded Akhilesh of his promise in January that the latter would relinquish party Presidentship after three months, and hand over the reins to Mulayam. But Akhilesh Yadav retorted by covertly saying that he was well aware of party betrayers in an apparent reference to Shivpal.
A day after Shivpal’s secular front missive, Mulayam launched a scathing attack against son Akhilesh in Etawah regretting his decision to make him UP CM in 2012.
Mulayam Singh, in no uncertain words criticized the SP-Congress alliance and deplored Akhilesh’s decision to continue it saying that the Congress party had not spared a single chance to trouble SP leaders and ruin the party.
Now with the latest expulsions, the party leadership is believed to have hinted that it won’t take rebellion and action was certain against all those who acted against party interests, irrespective of their party status.
Both Shahid and Deepak Mishra, prominent leaders in the party were known as Shivpal loyalists and staunchly stood behind him.
“Since I was not a member of the illegal convention of the Samajwadi Party which elected Akhilesh as national president, he does not have any right to expel me,” said Mohammed Shahid.
Accusing the SP chief of deliberately targeting the Samajawadis, Shahid said “Pampering and promoting money culture has become the party’s new order.”
Refusing to acknowledge Akhilesh as SP chief, Shahid said that he had joined SP as a follower of great socialists Mulayam Singh Yadav and Shivpal Yadav and would continue to work for them.
Meanwhile, according to party sources, the SP chief is considering action against Shivpal Yadav for his announcement about a secular front. “Even Shivpal would have been shown the door had he not had Mulayam on his side,” said a senior party leader. Political observers believe that Mulayam’s support to Shivpal is proving to be a hindrance for Akhilesh in ending the latter’s chapter in the party.
But Akhilesh’s cornering of Shivpal Yadav by cracking down on his loyalists, the family feud, which has cost the party its government in the State, seems set to escalate with renewed bitterness among members of the Yadav family and little chances of a thaw in the near future.

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