Lucknow: Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav met here on Tuesday in what informed sources said was a last-minute bid to buy peace in the party but it proved unsuccessful with some serious issues remaining unsolved..
The 90-minute meeting, at Mulayam Singh’s residence, came amid the serious prospects of the Election Commission freezing the party’s election symbol ‘cycle’.
According to sources, Mulayam Singh had agreed on some nagging points like larger say of Akhilesh Yadav in the selection of party candidates for the forthcoming state assembly polls, but Chief Minister refused to accept most demands made by his father.
These included stepping down as the national party president and withdrawing the petition filed before the Election Commission (EC).
The Chief Minister is learnt to have heard out his father, presented his side of the story and discussed the future of Ram Gopal Yadav, Shivpal Yadav and Amar Singh and distribution of tickets and a possible alliance with the Congress.
The sources said the impasse continued as Akhilesh Yadav drove out without making any commitment to his father. He is learnt to have told him that he would consult his team and Ram Gopal Yadav and revert.
The Akhilesh camp does not want to backtrack now and is ready to go alone even if the party symbol – cycle, goes to his father’s camp, a top leader said.
Booting out Ram Gopal Yadav, who has mentored the Akhilesh Yadav camp in the past few months has also not been accepted by the Akhilesh camp.
Mulayam Singh has refused to thaw towards Ram Gopal Yadav, who he has time and again blamed for misleading his son into rebellion and the January 1 coup against himself. His close aide Amar Singh and younger brother Shivpal Singh Yadav also are daggers drawn with the Rajya Sabha member.
On Monday while Mulayam Singh announced that of the party is voted to power, Akhilesh Yadav would be the Chief Minister, he had, hours before, written to the Rajya Sabha Chairman’s office informing it of the expulsion of Ram Gopal Yadav and seeking he be allocated a back bench, rather than the prime front row he has been sitting in all these years as leader of the Samajwadi Party (SP) in the upper House.
In an apparent indication that the Akhilesh Yadav camp was not willing to backtrack, Akhilesh’s camp announced three names of MLC (teachers constituency) polls. The statement addressed the UP Chief Minister as ‘Hon’ble National President’.
The poll panel, which was petitioned by both factions for claim on the party symbol, has now summoned both factions on January 13. With the factionalism in the ruling dispensation likely to continue, the symbol, experts say might be freezes by the ECI and separate temporary symbols given to both factions for contesting the assembly polls.