Mulayam fire-fights SP battle, keeps suspense over CM candidature

| Updated: Oct 25, 2016 21:24 IST

Lucknow [India], Oct. 25 (ANI): Breaking his silence on the massive family feud plaguing the Samajwadi Party, party chief Mulayam Yadav on Tuesday strongly defended his aide Amar Singh from the onslaught by expelled leader Ram Gopal Yadav and said that there was a conspiracy to frame him. Addressing the media in a much awaited press conference with his brother and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav's bete noire Shivpal Yadav at his side, Mulayam started off with the firm assertion that there is not rift within the Yadav family, adding all Samajwadi Party leaders stand united. Asserting that he stood with his son Akhilesh, who was visibly absent from the meeting, the Samajwadi Party supremo added that the chief ministerial candidate for 2017 assembly polls would be announced after the party's victory in next year's elections. When asked if the sacked ministers would be reinstated in the party, he replied, "I leave that to the Chief Minister to decide." "I have dedicated my entire political life towards the Samajwadi Party and have worked towards alleviating the troubles of my people," Mulayam stated while steering clear of all questions regarding any animosity with Akhilesh. Reacting to expelled leader Ram Gopal Yadav's fierce attack on Akhilesh's critics, Mulayam shrugged off the charge and said, "no one really gives prominence to what he says." However, Mulayam was quick to jump to his aide Amar Singh's defence when asked to respond to the charges against him. "Why is there the need to drag Amar Singh into everything? There are some people, who are simply trying to defame him." Earlier, Ram Gopal urged his elder cousin Mulayam not to treat him like a bad and discarded penny. Yadav yet again sided with Akhilesh Yadav while stating that the party scaled new heights because of the latter's relentless efforts. Yadav said Akhilesh came to power with majority in 2012 because of public support, adding the Samajwadi Party could not achieve it during the last three elections. "I will reiterate that the Samajwadi Party's present position is because of Akhilesh, minus Akhilesh then there is no Samajwadi Party. My only aim is how to make Akhilesh Yadav the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh yet again and I will do everything to ensure it," he added. The expelled Samajwadi Party leader also reached out to Mulayam, saying he is still his brother. "But maybe, I was not his brother. I was a person, who used to write letters for him. And now he will appoint someone else to write letters for him," he added sarcastically. Responding to a poser on whether Amar Singh is to be blamed for the ongoing feud within the party and family, Yadav said that this question must be asked to 'Netaji' and Shivpal. "You should ask this from Shivpal Singh and Netaji. They can only answer what is special about Amar Singh," he said. The rift in the Samajwadi Party escalated yesterday as Akhilesh and Shivpal failed to come on board despite Mulayam's emotional appeal. The Samajwadi Party boss backed Shivpal and Amar Singh despite his son openly opposing them. During his address at the meeting attended by the Samajwadi Party leaders and workers, Mulayam accused Akhilesh of not giving Shivpal due recognition. Closed door meetings with party seniors and one on one meetings of Mulayam continued till late night yesterday but no truce emerged. (ANI)