Rampur: Under fire from several quarters for spending people's money on Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Mulayam Singh Yadav's 75th birthday celebrations, party's prominent Muslim face and UP Minister Azam Khan on Friday hit back, saying Dawood Ibrahim, Taliban and Abu Salem are paying for the birthday bash.
When questioned about the funding for the SP chief's birthday celebrations, Khan gave a brief response and said, “Dawood, Taliban, Abu Salem are paying for Mulayam's birthday bash.”
Importantly, Azam Khan's stronghold Rampur is the place where massive arrangements have been made for the two-day long grand celebration of veteran Socialist leader Mulayam Singh Yadav’s 75th birthday.
Mulayam’s birthday falls on November 22 and Uttar Pradesh's ruling party has invited a large number of guests from across the country and abroad, besides Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and several members of Netaji's family.
Azam Khan, who is the in-charge of the two-day celebrations which begin today, has left no stone unturned to ensure that Netaji's 75th birthday becomes a memorable one. As per reports, a vintage Victorian-style buggy has been imported from London, which will ferry the SP supremo to the birthday venue.
"Last time, we had welcomed him in a vintage car. This time, for our leader, we have imported a Victorian buggy. On the route, the cultural department is organising plays and other programs," Azam Khan told reporters.
As per reports, the SP chief will land here at around 3 pm after which he will be taken around the town in the Victorian-style buggy. In the evening, cultural programmes will be held during which popular singers Hans Raj Hans and Sabri brothers will entertain the guests and at the midnight, Netaji will cut a 75-foot long cake.
On Saturday, Mulayam will lay the foundation stone of a medical college at Khan's Jauhar University. Over the last few days, Rampur's administration has been busy sprucing up the town for the event. Almost 100 welcome gates have been erected and several huge posters praising the SP chief have been put on walls across the town.
Rampuir District Magistrate CP Tripathi said, "All departments have been working to ensure that Netaji's 75th birthday is celebrated in a grand manner." However, the huge list of VVIP invitees, which also include more than two dozen bureaucrats, has left the officers in the Bareilly range, under which Rampur city falls, in a tizzy.
The city, spread in an area of 84 sq km, lacks infrastructure to accommodate such a large number of VVIPs and all its major guest houses and hotels have been booked. The city administration has also made arrangements to put up the guests in adjacent Moradabad and Bareilly city, 60 and 30 kilometers away from Rampur, respectively.
According to Rampur City Magistrate Ram Singh, the ministers will be made to stay at Modi and Opel hotels in Rampur while another 10 hotels have also been booked for other VIP guests. He said the artists will stay at Moradabad while MPs, MLAs, and chairmen and members of commissions will stay in Bareilly.
He said 32 ambassadors with red beacons have been arranged along with 20 Innovas. He added that nearly 45 ministers have confirmed their arrival. Besides, two SP rank officers, 27 deputy SPs and 1,200 constables have been deputed to look after the security arrangement.
Nearly, a dozen schools in the city have been asked to declare holiday for two days. Some school buildings have also been taken for accommodating the security forces.