How Akhilesh and Priyanka are twinning in UP politics

Lucknow, Aug 7 (IANS) In politics, horoscopes are not matched necessarily but circumstances often bring out similarities between politicians even though they may not tread the same path.
Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, general secretary in charge of Congress in Uttar Pradesh, have developed a style of working that is strikingly similar and so is the outcome.
“They are almost twinning when it comes to politics. Both had a sea of opportunities before them but they seem to destroying the legacy they inherited. Their parties are nose diving ever since they took,” said R.K. Singh, a senior political analyst.
The most common complaint against Akhilesh and Priyanka is their inaccessibility to party workers.
Akhilesh, for reasons best known to him, keep the gates of his home and office firmly shut for party workers and meets only those who are members of his coterie.
A senior SP MLA says: “It is much more difficult to meet Akhilesh Yadav than it is to meet Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. Even during the Assembly elections, I left several messages with his office but was not given time. This kind of behaviour of a political leader, one is leader a political party, is detrimental to party interests and also a major reason for discontent.”
Party leaders also blame Akhilesh’s coterie of being arrogant.
Recently, Abdullah Azam, son of SP leader Mohd Azam Khan, expressed his displeasure over the comments made by a party spokesman Udaiveer Singh, known for his proximity to Akhilesh.
“I have noticed a statement by a spokesperson of the SP. These are the people responsible for SP’s ruin. I request them to comment only as per their level, and not attempt to bring in Azam Khan saheb… or else many things would worsen,” he said in a tweet.
If Akhilesh’s ‘coterie’ is in the line of fire in SP, it is Priyanka’s ‘team’ that has led to widespread resentment in the state Congress.
Priyanka’s personal secretary Sandeep Singh and others are known for their arrogance and misbehaviour with party workers. Their audio clips where conversations are interspersed with abusive language are made viral of the party’s WhatsApp groups with an alarming frequency.
“This team serves as a barrier between Priyanka and party workers. No one can meet Priyanka without the sanction of her team and, therefore, she is completely inaccessible for party workers now. Even in Delhi, she meets only those who have permission form Sandeep Singh. She has not visited UP in recent months,” said a former Congress MLA.
Another factor that is common between Akhilesh and Priyanka is their disdain for senior leaders in the party.
Both have completely sidelined veterans and are pinning their hopes on younger leaders who are not even familiar with the party ideology.
In the SP, veterans who belong to the Mulayam Singh era are nowhere to be seen. Leaders like Ambica Chaudhary, Om Prakash Singh, Narad Rai are biding their time in the wings.
In the Uttar Pradesh Congress, former UPCC presidents like Nirmal Khatri, Shri Prakash Jaiswal, Arun Kumar Singh Munna, Raj Babbar have been pushed into oblivion and the remaining have been expelled from the party.
As a result, the two parties are rapidly losing ground by the day.
Under Akhilesh’s leadership, the SP has lost the 2017 Assembly, 2019 Lok Sabha and 2022 Assembly elections. The Congress has already hit rock bottom ever since Priyanka took over the reins in 2019.
What worries party workers is the fact that the two leaders refuse to see the writing on the wall.
They continue to wage political battles on social media and have disconnected themselves from ground realities.

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