Sat, Dec 3, 2016 | updated 01:26 AM IST

"If you can't face criticism, you can't be a leader": Mulayam tells Akhilesh

Updated: Oct 24, 2016 12:25 IST

Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India], Oct. 24 (ANI): Extremely upset with the ongoing rift within the family and party, Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav on Monday reprimanded his son Akhilesh Yadav and said that the priority at this point of time should be to decrease the differences instead of fighting with each other.

Invoking veteran socialist Ram Manohar Lohia in his speech addressed to his party leaders and workers, Mulayam said that they were even baton charged in their struggle to form the Samajwadi Party.

"I am extremely upset with the rift within the party. I know it's a difficult situation. Those who can't take criticism cannot become leaders," said Mulayam.

"We are fighting among ourselves. We should decrease our differences. Those who are indulging in sloganeering will be thrown out of the party. I have given respect to the youth and no one else," he added.

In a stern warning to his son Akhilesh, Mulayam said the former "has lost his mind" after getting the Chief Minister's chair.

"Drunkards, goons have been added to the party. You get some power and it goes to your head. Few leaders know nothing except flattery. Some ministers are just busy being sycophants and the people who can't think big, can't be a minister," said Mulayam.

" Jo bahut ucchal rahein hai agar baat aayi to ek laathi bhi nahin seh paaenge. I am not a weak person till date. Do not think that the youth is not with me," he added.

Lauding his younger brother Shivpal Yadav as the "leader of masses", the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister said that his immense contribution to the party can never be forgotten.

"We can never be separated. I can't leave Amar Singh or Shivpal Yadav. All of Amar Singh's sins are forgiven," Mulayam said.

Continuing his outburst against his son, Mulayam said: "I tell Akhilesh things but he focuses on other things. Abusing people does not help."

"Look at Prime Minister Modi, he became the PM with dedication and struggle. He comes from a poor family, says he can't leave his mother," he added attempting to bring his family on board.

The Samajwadi Party supremo broke down as he asked Akhilesh to hug his uncle Shivpal.

Mulayam also issued a warning to those attempting to take advantage of the ongoing feud within the party and family.

Asserting that he has fought a lot to form the party, Mulayam said that he even went to the jail and struggled for the farmers and the poor.

Today's meeting takes place a day after Sunday's dramatic events when Akhilesh sacked his uncle Shivpal Yadav from his Cabinet for the second time in a month. Many considered this to be a direct challenge to his father Mulayam, who has been promoting Shivpal over him.

Hours later, Mulayam ordered the expulsion of his cousin Ram Gopal Yadav, considered to be Akhilesh loyalist, from the party for six years.

This was announced by Shivpal, who alleged that Ram Gopal was tarnishing the Samajwadi Party's image by colluding with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and attempting to weaken Mulayam's hold on the party.

Meanwhile, the supporters of both Akhilesh and Shivpal gathered outside the party office in Lucknow and engaged in competitive sloganeering.

The opposition parties are keeping a close tab of today's meeting amid speculations that the Samajwadi Party is headed for a split just before assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh. (ANI)