In yet another indication of continuing infighting within the Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Friday, skipped a crucial party meeting convened by state unit chief and his uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav.
Akhilesh did not attend the meeting of district presidents of the Samajwadi Party, even though Shivpal drove down to his residence on Friday to invite him personally for the event. He also announced that his Rath Yatra will start from 3 November and that he would inform the district chiefs, whose region the yatra passes, about the detailed programme
The meeting was called to discuss the 2017 assembly elections and to prepare for a silver jubilee function of the ruling party scheduled for 5 November.
Informed sources said the Chief Minister was in no mood to compromise on his stated opposition to entry of criminals and re-entry of ministers accused of graft into the SP and demand for complete say in deciding tickets for the assembly elections.
Shivpal Singh Yadav is learnt to have told the SP's district presidents at the meeting that Akhilesh will be Chief Minister again if the party returns to power in the 2017 elections.
"I am ready to give it in writing on a stamp paper that if we win a majority, Akhilesh will be the next Chief Minister" he told party leaders.
On Friday, Akhilesh called a meeting of his close party workers at his residence in Lucknow. According to a report by Pradesh 18, he said that the graph of the party has been going up and down. He said, "Out of the four tires of the party, three are punctured."
He was giving clear signals that the internal rifts in the party are quite serious.
With inputs from agencies
Updated Date: Oct 22, 2016 09:24 AM