The rift in the Samajwadi Party grew wider over the weekend after Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and his uncle and state party chief Shivpal Yadav submitting separate lists of candidates for the upcoming UP elections to party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav.
While Shivpal has reportedly submitted a list of 175 candidates, Akhilesh has submitted a separate list of 403 candidates for the assembly constituencies, without consulting Shivpal. Mulayam is expected to take a final call.
Meanwhile, Shivpal in a series of tweets on Sunday evening said that tickets would be given depending on a candidate's potential for wins. He also warned that there would be no indiscipline in the party, which would harm the party's image. "The Chief Minister will be selected by the legislature party which is according to the party's constitution. No indiscipline will be tolerated in the party," he tweeted in Hindi.
Akhilesh reportedly met several first-time MLAs at his residence on Saturday, promising them party tickets.
As differences over ticket distribution cropped up, opposition parties took a swipe at the ruling party in Uttar Pradesh. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday said the first family of the Samajwadi Party should resolve the 'mahabharat' and focus on law and order, corruption and lack of administration in the politically crucial state.
"This is a sign that the party (SP) is in total disarray and they talk about giving a fight to the BJP," UP BJP General Secretary Vijay Bahadur Pathak told PTI. The tussle in Samajwadi Party will prove to be its nemesis in the coming polls, Pathak said.
BJP spokesperson Nalin Kohli also used the occasion to take a jibe at reports suggesting about the possibility of a 'mahagathbandhan' in the run up to next year's Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls.
"However, in the first family of the Samajwadi Party of Uttar Pradesh a 'mahabharat' is already on for quite some time. Now, it appears that there are multiple lists - one by the uncle, one by the nephew who is the Chief Minister and there are all sorts of disputes. They should resolve that," Kohli told ANI.
"As far as the people of Uttar Pradesh are concerned, they are obviously going to vote on the track record of the Samajwadi Party. The substantial issues are law and order, corruption and the lack of administration," he added.
Congress termed the development as SP's "internal matter".
This is not the first time that Akhilesh and his uncle have clashed over tickets distribution. Akhilesh had expressed his opposition to fielding candidates who have criminal records, like Atiq Ahmed and Mukhtar Ansari's brother Sibaqtullah Ansari.
The Ansari brothers belong to Quami Ekta Dal, which recently merged with the party despite opposition from Akhilesh.
(with agency inputs)
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