POLITICS

Akhilesh And Mulayam Likely To Take Their Battle For Bicycle To The Election Commission Today

Tough love.

02/01/2017 9:08 AM IST | Updated 02/01/2017 9:42 AM IST
Pawan Kumar / Reuters
Akhilesh Yadav, Chief Minister of the northern state of Uttar Pradesh and the son of Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, waves at his supporters during a Rath Yatra, or a chariot journey, as part of an election campaign in Lucknow, India November 3, 2016. REUTERS/Pawan Kumar

Both Akhilesh Yadav, the newly elected president of the Samajwadi Party, and Mulayam Singh Yadav, its founder, will approach the Election Commission on Monday to stake claim to the party's 'bicycle' symbol. Sources told ANI that the new president has to approach the Election Commission according to the party's convention, claiming to be the real Samajwadi Party, and stake claim to the symbol.

As per the party's constitution, the president of the party allots symbols in election.

The Times of India reported that Mulayam is likely to reach Delhi along with his brother Shivpal for a meeting with the EC. However, the Election Commission is likely to freeze the symbol.

"Sometimes to protect the ones you love you must make the right decision. What I did today was a tough decision but one that I had to take," Akhilesh tweeted yesterday. Though the son kept reiterating that he had the highest regard and love for his father, and that he was saving the SP patriarch from 'bad' influences around him, yesterday's coup has left Mulayam isolated.

He admitted that it was a 'tough' stand to take. The convention also made Mulayam the Samajwadi Party's patron..

The party's co-founder Reoti Raman Singh and its vice-president Kiranmay Nanda were among those who were present with Akhilesh on the dais, reported the Indian Express. Even those who have had long association with Mulayam were also seen siding with the young scion of the Yadav clan.

NurPhoto via Getty Images
Supporters of Uttar Pradesh's Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav burn the symbolic last ride effigy of Amar Singh, as they protest against the evictions of Akhilesh from Samajwadi Party for 6 years.

The two sides on Sunday engaged in mutual recriminatory expulsions with the convention called by Ram Gopal Yadav removing Akhilesh's warring uncle Shivpal Yadav as state party chief, and showing the door to "outsider" Amar Singh, who has been blamed for the feud in the Yadav clan.

Mualyam retorted by again expelling his cousin Ram Gopal for six years along with national vice president Kiranmoy Nanda, who chaired the convention, and general secretary Naresh Agarwal for taking part in it.

43-year-old Akhilesh was "unanimously" crowned the SP president as Ram Gopal moved a proposal to make Mulayam, the founder president of SP, the party patron at the convention, where the CM's faction claimed that over 200 of the party's 229 MLAs, around 30 MLCs, besides majority of office bearers of district units were present.

The convention also authorised Akhilesh to constitute a national executive, parliamentary board and various state units, as required, and inform the Election Commission of the developments at the earliest.

The proposal to make Akhilesh SP chief was welcomed by a huge applause by nearly 5,000 partymen who had gathered at the sprawling Janeshwar Misra Park here.

Mulayam termed as illegal all decisions taken at the convention. In a hard-hitting letter, he said the convention had not been called with permission of the national president and so all decision taken there were invalid.

In a counter move, he also convened a national convention of the party on January 5 at the same venue here. Although Mulayam warned that participation in the convention will be taken as indiscipline and action will be initiated against those attending it, almost all senior leaders who had been longtime associates of Mulayam shared the dais with Ram Gopal and Akhilesh.

The fresh developments which almost left both Mulayam and younger brother Shivpal isolated in the party came a day after SP revoked the expulsion of Akhilesh and Ram Gopal amid the running bitter turf battle in the Yadav clan which threatens to affect its prospects in the upcoming Assembly election.

In more signs of defiance, Akhilesh appointed MLC Naresh Uttam as the new state president, replacing Shivpal.

Soon after the appointment of the new state unit president, supporters of Akhilesh laid siege to the state SP headquarters here in the high security VIP zone and forcibly wrenched out the nameplate of Shivpal to vent their ire. (With inputs from agencies)

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