Akhilesh all set to marginalize Shivpal

Akhilesh Yadav

Akhilesh Yadav

West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Mamata Banerjee today congratulated former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav on becoming national president of the Samajwadi Party (SP) for next five years.

Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav on Wednesday trained his guns at Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government for demonetisation and backed Yashwant Sinha's claims regarding the same. He said that Akhilesh would leave for Agra from Lucknow by road in the morning and party workers will welcome him on the way.

On the inaugural day, SP president Akhilesh Yadav will brief leaders about the party's agenda.

"I assure you that I will fulfil the responsibility given to me. Business has come to a standstill, inflation is rising and traders are in a state of mental shock", the former UP chief minister said. "In future if we have to do a big rally to take on the BJP we will do that too", Yadav said at the event. The state president's tenure has already been extended by a similar period by the state executive and Naresh Uttam was unanimously re-elected to the post for five years. Shivpal, it is reported, congratulated nephew Akhilesh over telephone on getting a second term as party president.

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Ahead of the Uttar Pradesh elections in May, Mulayam Singh had expelled his son Akhilesh Yadav from the Samajwadi Party. After feud in the Yadav family, Akhilesh Yadav and his uncle Ram Gopal Yadav joined hands and Shivpal Yadav, Mulayam were sidelined.

The party was thought to be on the verge of a split after its dismal performance in the UP election, which saw it being reduced to 47 seats in the 403-member assembly amid a BJP sweep.

This is the Samajwadi Party's first regular convention that won't feature either Mulayam or Shivpal.

The fissures in the father-son relationship, however, remain as Mulayam Singh was conspicuously missing from the scene before the key party convention despite Akhilesh personally inviting him for the meet.

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