At a time when the entire opposition looks to corner the BJP-led government at the Centre, Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav has heaped praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his speech on the last day of the current Lok Sabha. Yadav said he would like to see PM Modi re-elected to the office again, according to news agency ANI.
He said, “I want to congratulate the prime minister. The prime minister has taken efforts to take everyone along. I want all the members to get elected again and you (PM Modi) become the prime minister again.”
Later PM Modi thanked Yadav for his “blessings” ahead of the Lok Sabha elections. “This house scrapped more than 1,400 laws. There was a jungle of laws. This is a good beginning, much more is to be done…And, Mulayamji has given his blessings for the same,” said PM Modi in the Lok Sabha.
However, the comments by Yadav did not find support from his own party. “I don’t have knowledge about the context in which Netaji said it. But we want change of government at centre. The prime minister himself will lose from his constituency,” news agency ANI quoted Samajwadi Party leader Ravidas Mehrotra as saying.
Yadav’s comments have come at a time when his son and the Samajawadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav is trying to cobble up an opposition unity to defeat the Modi government in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Under Akhilesh Yadav, the SP buried its long rivalry with the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) to enter an alliance in a bid to challenge the BJP in Uttar Pradesh, where the ruling party had won 71 of 80 Lok Sabha seats in 2014.
The Samajwadi Party, however, has seen dissensions over the last one and a half year during which the Yadav was replaced as party chief in show of strength by Akhilesh Yadav. Shivpal Yadav, the younger brother of Mulayam Singh Yadav, broke away from the Samajwadi Party and floated his own political front.
Shivpal Yadav’s party is likely to contest a few seats in Uttar Pradesh in the parliamentary polls. His outfit was completely ignored by the SP-BSP alliance which took the parties like Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) and Nishad Party in consideration but the former formidable SP leader was apparently not consulted in the process.
The senior Yadav has tried to strike a balance between his son Akhilesh Yadav and brother Shivpal Yadav, who was his Man Friday for over two decades in running the Samajwadi Party.