Coalition with BSP Has Weakened SP: Mulayam Singh Yadav

The party's former chief also suggested that the BJP is better prepared for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Lucknow: Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav on Thursday hinted he is upset with the alliance forged by his son and party president Akhilesh Yadav with the Bahujan Samaj Party.

Mulayam Singh Yadav expressed unhappiness over the pact in Uttar Pradesh ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, questioning why Akhilesh Yadav gave half the seats to Mayawati’s party.

The remarks come days after the SP patriarch created a stir in parliament by saying he hoped that Prime Minister Narendra Modi returns to power.

Addressing party workers at the SP headquarters here, he urged them to approach him for the ticket to contest the parliamentary polls and suggested that he could change any decision taken by his son.

Akhilesh Yadav and Mayawati announced the alliance in January, saying the SP and the BSP will contest 38 seats each out of the 80 in Uttar Pradesh. On Thursday, the seat sharing was revised, with the SP contesting 37 and the SP contesting 38.

“Now, tell me the basis for giving away half the seats. Now we have only half the seats left. Our party was stronger,” Mulayam Singh Yadav said.

“We are strong, our men are weakening the party. What a strong party we had made, and I became the CM and the defence minister as well,” he said, suggesting that the SP has seen better days under him.

Also Read: UP Lok Sabha Elections: SP to Contest 37 Seats, BSP Gets 38

“The BJP’s election preparation is better. It has an edge over us,” he told party workers, and suggested that the candidates should be announced soon so that they can begin work on the ground.

“How many of you have given applications to me? Nobody. Then how will you get the ticket. Akhilesh will give the ticket, but I can change it,” he said.

Mulayam also mentioned the departure of his brother Shivpal Yadav, who broke away from the SP and formed the Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party-Lohia.

Party president Akhilesh Yadav had earlier addressed a joint press conference with Patidar leader Hardik Patel. Both then met Mulayam Singh Yadav briefly and left the party office.

The senior Yadav’s press interaction followed. SP state president Naresh Uttam sat next to him, taking notes.

Mulayam Singh Yadav said women should be given more tickets by the party, a claim that was also made by Akhilesh Yadav at The Wire Dialogues event earlier this month.

Speaking on the last day of the 16th Lok Sabha earlier this month, Mulayam Singh Yadav had triggered much speculation when he congratulated Modi for taking everyone along .

I hope all members will win and return and you will become the prime minister again,” he had then said.

(With PTI inputs)