Lucknow/Chitrakoot: For the second time in two weeks, Mulayam Singh Yadav today praised BJP veteran L K Advani who was earlier lauded by the Samajwadi Party supremo as the "tallest leader" of the country.
Mulayam`s praise of Advani on March 23 had triggered speculation he was perhaps cosying up to the BJP with an eye on the Lok Sabha elections.
The former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister praised Advani this time for lauding socialist icon and his mentor Dr Ram Manohar Lohia.
Asked to comment on the praise of Lohia by Advani in Chitrakoot, Yadav said it was good if he had done so.
"If the BJP leader has praised it`s a good thing. A good leader should be praised. A lot of hue and cry was raised by media when I appreciated Advani... Those who had done or are doing good should be appreciated. Should one, who is doing good be abused," Yadav said.
Yadav was addressing a meeting of SP district unit chiefs to review preparedness for the Lok Sabha polls due next year.
Advani praised Lohia in his address on the first day of the UP BJP executive meet in Chitrakoot.
The BJP leader said he agreed with the concept of unified India mooted by BJP ideologue Deen Dayal Upadhyaya and Lohia.
Advani said that once he had a chance to meet Lohia as a journalist and the latter while emphasising that he was a socialist said he respected nationalist ideology of Bharatiya Jansangh.
At a function in Lucknow on the occasion of the 103rd birth anniversary of Lohia on March 23, Yadav while dubbing Advani has the country`s tallest leader had also hailed him as one of the most honest politicians.
"Advaniji desh ke sabse baade neta hain. Woh kabhi jhoot nahin bolte (Advani is the tallest leader in the country. He never lies)," he had said.
Yadav had also spoken about Advani`s assessment of the situation in UP. "Advani sahab says UP is in very bad state and corruption is rampant.... Now I have to assess the situation when a senior leader like Advani says such a thing. He never lies. He always speaks the truth, as I have said many times.... I`ll go and meet him again," Yadav said.
In this context, Advani said today that he had a "conversation" with Yadav. "I had a conversation with Mulayam Singh, but I think that he will speak about it publicly... Because he met me in the Lok Sabha and it was then that I told him that...," he told reporters without elaborating.