Lucknow: Shivpal Singh Yadav, the estranged uncle of Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav, and president of the Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party Lohia (PSPL), seems finally ‘disillusioned’ with his mentor and elder brother Mulayam Singh Yadav.
Shivpal, who has never criticised his elder brother on any issue, finally said: “I formed PSPL with the consent of ‘Netaji’ (Mulayam) and I am not going back now.”
Shivpal was responding to questions about his possible return to the Samajwadi fold or a patch-up with his nephew Akhilesh Yadav during a party meeting in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly district on Sunday.
Asked whether he felt betrayed by his elder brother who was seen frequently in the company of his son Akhilesh these days, Shivpal said: “This is something that Netaji can answer. I have always followed his directives and I did what he told me to do. I am not looking back now.”
Mulayam was seen with his son at the SP headquarters in Lucknow on Saturday when former chief of Hindu Yuva Vahini (HYV) Sunil Singh, once considered close to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, joined the Samajwadi Party.
Mulayam even stated at the function that his Samajwadi Party was now in the hands of the youth since most of the senior leaders of the party had reached the twilight zone of life.
Shivpal further said that he always gave respect to Mulayam, who is not only his elder brother but also his political guru.
“It was the issue of not giving importance to Netaji that led to the split of the Samajwadi Party in 2017. This is the reason that the SP could not form the government in Uttar Pradesh again, otherwise Akhilesh would have been the chief minister again,” Shivpal said.
The discontent in the Yadav family had come to the fore in January 2017 when Akhilesh became the national president of the party by staging a coup of sorts and reducing Mulayam to the status of a ‘patron’.
Shivpal said that since he had decided to move ahead, his efforts will now be to unite those who believe in the philosophy of Ram Manohar Lohia, Chaudhary Charan Singh and Mahatma Gandhi.
Shivpal, who had formed his new party in October 2018 after parting ways with the Samajwadi Party, also ruled out the possibility of entering into any alliance with the BJP.
He admitted that there were talks about coordination with the BJP, but we did not enter into any alliance.
He further said that he was working on strengthening the PSPL and building the party infrastructure down to the booth level before the 2022 Assembly elections.
“We are working at the ground and not building castles in the air,” he added.