On Saturday, shortly after brokering peace between his feuding son Akhilesh Yadav and brother Shivpal Yadav, Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Mulayam Singh Yadav launched a scathing attack on the former, who seemed to have emerged a winner from the tussle.
In a public address, Mulayam blamed his son for turning egotistical during his tenure as the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh. "Had I not agreed, he would have not become the CM ever," The Hindustan Times quoted him saying. "Everybody must know that once you are in a high post, you should learn to take everyone along. You must also learn to tolerate criticism," he added.
Mulayam pointed out that Akhilesh had little individual standing in politics before the 2012 polls, when Shivpal had asked Mulayam to become the chief minister for the fourth time. Since then, Mulayam said, Akhilesh has been upset with his uncle.
"What did Akhilesh do before the 2012 polls, other than riding a bicycle? While I admit that his government may have done a good job, most of it consisted of just carrying forward the work my government did," he said.
Mulayam went on to claim that Akhilesh won the 2012 elections because of the promising party manifesto drafted by him, along with Shivpal and cousin Ram Gopal Yadav.
The SP leader added that Shivpal had been probably right in his suggestion. "The defeat in the Lok Sabha polls was proof of this. Who was the chief minister when we lost in 2014 — getting just five seats? Can you even imagine how humiliated I felt? At one time, when I was the chief minister, we got 27 seats. At another instance, our Lok Sabha tally was 39. But how many seats did we get in 2014? Five seats — just five! We were ruined," Mulayam said.
When one of the party workers argued that the Modi wave was responsible for the 2014 election results, Mulayam reportedly dismissed him curtly. He also rebuked another worker for demanding action against Amar Singh, The Times of India reported. Singh, Mulayam said, had stood by him when he was deserted by almost everyone else after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had filed a case against him.
Mulayam also made uncharitable remarks about the programmes launched by Akhilesh's government. The funds for the metro project, he said, could have been better used for the welfare of farmers. "Almost all the schemes he talks about were launched by me, be it Kanya Vidya Dhan, free power to farmers for irrigation, or free medicine to poor," he added.
Sources say Mulayam's comments may have been made as damage control for the fall-out between Akhilesh and Shivpal.
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