Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Friday met first-time Samajwadi Party MLAs, and directed them to propagate developmental schemes launched by the government.
Interestingly, the meet was only held for the first time legislators.
As SP state president Shivpal Yadav is releasing the list of candidates and there are some seats like Ayodhya on which confrontation might once again take place.
Tej Narain alias Pawan Pandey is MLA from Ayodhya, who was sacked from the party by Shivpal but as he is close to Akhilesh he is continuing as minister (of state for Forest) in his Cabinet.
Reports are doing rounds that the meet was called as show of strength by the Akhilesh camp.
Samajwadi Party's Uttar Pradesh unit President Shivpal Yadav, has been embroiled in a bitter power tussle with his nephew and state Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav for the last few months.
Commenting on the developments, Bharatiya Janata Party (B JP) leader Zafar Islam said the crack within the Yadav family is apparent and it's a fight for supremacy.
Hitting out at the SP, the BJP leader said the people of Uttar Pradesh have become the victim of the family feud, which has resulted in no development in the state.
Commenting on the possible tie-up of Samajwadi Party and the congress, Islam termed the move as 'alliance of convenience'. He alleged SP of being nervous and said the Congress has no stand in the state.
Islam asserted BJP will win a majority.
The recent list of candidates released by the SP state president has once again brought to the fore the tug-of-war within the ruling party clan as names of gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari's brother and another mafia don Ateeq Ahmad might not be palatable to Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.
The list of 23 candidates clearly bears the stamp of Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav and Shivpal as Ansari's brother and sitting Qaumi Ekta Dal (QED) MLA Sigbatullah Ansari has been nominated from Mohammadabad in Ghazipur - a seat he presently holds.
QED's merger with Samajwadi Party had been openly opposed by the chief minister and the issue clearly became a flashpoint in the feud in the Yadav clan ahead of the upcoming Assembly elections.
Another controversial name in the list released yesterday is that of mafia don Ateeq Ahmad who has been fielded from Kanpur Cantt seat.
Though Shivpal said winnability and loyalty to the party have been the main criteria in selecting candidates, analysts pointed out that in the process objections raised by Akhilesh over some of the candidates appeared to have been overruled.
Though the SP has changed a few candidates, the name of Aman Mani Tripathi, who was recently arrested by the CBI for the murder of his wife Sara Singh, remains on the list.
The chief minister reportedly "did not approve" of his candidature and it was expected that the party might replace him.
The latest ticket distribution might cause fresh ripples in the Yadav family as recently SP National General Secretary Ramgopal Yadav said he would have the "final say" in ticket distribution by virtue of the posts he held in the party and SP Parliamentary Board.