Samajwadi Party’s legislator, Udayveer Singh, has asked Mulayam Singh Yadav to make way for chief minister Akhilesh Yadav as national president, besides claiming that MSY’s second wife is orchestrating the unpleasant drama playing out in the Yadav clan. He also said Shivpal Yadav is the political front of the CM’s stepmother… These are daring proclamations, albeit laden with consequences for the MLC.
Interestingly, Udayveer was Akhilesh Yadav’s classmate and their friendship goes back over 30 years.
Going back to the genesis of the tussle in the family, Singh said ever since Akhilesh’s name was announced as UP CM, conspiracies had begun to take shape at the behest of his stepmom. But she pulled the strings from behind the scenes and positioned Shivpal as the face of the disorder. Under pressure from his favourite brother, Shivpal, Mulayam even pulled up the CM and chided him several times, relaying the impression that despite holding the highest seat in the State, he had only limited control over the functioning of the Government. Many watched in morbid fascination as Akhilesh felt let down time and again.
No other State in the country has a CM as helpless as Akhilesh Yadav. Chief Ministers don’t get embarrassed in full view. When Mulayam was the CM, he had absolute control over his Government, with the power to take final decisions in matters related to the party. He consulted all, but took the final call. It is the only way to lead a State successfully, not otherwise, not the manner in which the present Government is operating.
Emboldened by Mulayam’s hard attitude towards Akhilesh, the anti-son camp is sneering in arrogance. Their actions are an open challenge to the sanctity of the office of the chief minister.
The rot is too deep. Even if Mulayam succeeds in patching things up between Shivpal and his nephew for the sake of the coming elections, the dislike will continue to simmer, needing only a slight trigger to explode into another crisis.
Perhaps, Mulayam should consider choosing a date of retirement. Not from politics, but from the top post he holds. He has single-handedly turned Samajwadi Party into a force critical to national politics. It is a party that can tilt the equation this way or that. He is truly a patriarch, having kept the party bound together since the mid-90s. But now the cracks are opening up and Mulayam is finding he is not as influential today. From Akhilesh to Shivpal, everyone keeps harping about the fact that whatever Netaji decides will be their command. Yet, they have been known to defy his instructions off late. Interestingly, the defiance is mostly emotional in nature.
Shivpal, after a meeting with Mulayam in Delhi, had come out and said that he will relinquish all posts and power and start afresh as a party worker on the ground. Very ideological, but perhaps, he knew full well that Mulayam would not allow him to take that step. Shivpal’s threat of resignation disturbed Mulayam, who pulled up his son yet again and reprimanded him for being too cocky. It worked.
Shivpal is a very crucial member of the family and Government. His contributions cannot be forgotten, but he is hardly the future. A vast majority of people in the state have accepted Akhilesh Yadav as their leader. It is a signal Mulayam should not ignore. It would be cruel and unkind to continue to keep him in a leash. He is young, unsullied and experienced enough now to take it to the next level. He is a different man to his father. A loyal son, but with greater exposure. He understands the pulse of the youth because he’s himself one.
They say that pride comes before a fall, but in politics, it also often triggers the collapse. Mulayam has nurtured this party and made many sacrifices during the course. He should not allow pride and prejudice kill it.