APARNA SHARES STAGE WITH SHIVPAL
LUCKNOW : Rebel Samajwadi Party lawmaker Shivpal Yadav, widely seen as gravitating towards the BJP after falling out with his nephew and party chief Akhilesh Yadav, shared the stage with his brother SP patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav’s daughter-in-law Aparna Yadav at a function in Lucknow. Shivpal was hailed as a ‘future UP CM’ in the presence of leaders of 24 smaller parties at the function. The buzz is that the BJP government is also reviewing security threat to Shivpal to upgrade his security to Z plus security cover currently allotted to both Mulayam and Akhilesh.
LUCKNOW: Rebel Samajwadi Party lawmaker Shivpal Yadav, widely seen as gravitating towards the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after falling out with his nephew and party chief Akhilesh Yadav, shared the stage with his brother SP patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav’s daughter-in-law Aparna Yadav at a function in Lucknow.
Shivpal was hailed as a ‘future UP CM’ in the presence of leaders of 24 smaller parties at the function.
Aparna’s presence with Shivpal, barely a day after Mulayam attended his function in Lucknow, had everyone guessing for this was her first public appearance with “chachaji” ever since Shivpal formed his Samajwadi Secular Morcha (SSM) on August 29.
Mulayam’s daughter-in-law made a brief but politically significant statement at the function, urging that Shivpal’s morcha be strengthened. She underlined the fact that if there was anyone leader or family member in the Samajwadi Party whom she had utmost respect for after Mulayam it was “chachaji.”
“I would appeal to all to strengthen the Secular Morcha,” she said.
On his part, Shivpal kept his address brief, staying clear of making any named references but dropping loaded political words, like “bada nirnaiy (big decision)” and “bada kaam (big work)”.
The function marked the foundation day event of Rashtriya Krantikari Samajwadi Party led by Gopal Rai and leaders of 24 smaller parties participated in it.
The development came barely a day after the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh allotted Shivpal the posh 6 Lal Bahadur Shastri Marg bungalow that was previously allotted to former UP chief minister and BSP chief Mayawati.
The palatial bungalow shares its boundary with Samajwadi Yuvjan Sabha office and Shivpal intends to use the bungalow as the office for his Secular Morcha. Shivpal would take out a 70-kilometre road show from Etawah to Firozabad on Sunday to establish his Morcha in the Yadav belt. In the run up to 2019 LS polls, such road shows would increase, Morcha leaders said.
Currently, Shivpal is only a MLA and the allotment of a bungalow held by a former chief minister and eyed by both senior leaders in the government and the opposition, raised eyebrows in political circles.
“I am senior politician and there were intelligence reports of a threat on me,” said Shivpal to justify the allotment that is seen as the BJP’s reward to him for his decision to float Morcha and field candidates, a move that the BJP hopes would help it politically by cutting into the SP’s OBC votes.
The buzz is that the BJP government is also reviewing security threat to Shivpal to upgrade his security to Z plus security cover currently allotted to both Mulayam and Akhilesh.
However, senior police officials including those in the security wing, weren’t willing to comment.
“It hasn’t come to us so far. Security reviews are done regularly for politicians. We will decide when it comes to us,” said a senior official of the security establishment.
Shivpal has declared that his Morcha will put up candidates for 2019 Lok Sabha elections and has shown willingness to offer the Mainpuri seat to his elder brother and SP patron Mulayam, who has already announced his decision to shift from Azamgarh to Mainpuri in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav has confirmed that Mulayam will contest from Mainpuri on the SP ticket but Shivpal’s offer is being viewed as an attempt to queer the pitch for Akhilesh.
Aparna evaded all queries on if Mulayam or she would contest from Shivpal’s morcha with a significant, “chachaji will decide” response.
Before flying abroad, Shivpal’s son Aditya had dared Akhilesh to contest LS polls from Kannauj to make the growing family feud that is spreading down to the younger Yadavs, apparent.
▪ Samajwadi Secular Morcha leader Shivpal Yadav with Aparna Yadav at a function in Lucknow on Saturday.