PATNA: RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav played the role of mediator and offered sane advice to Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, to bring about a rapprochement between the father-son duo following their political-cum-family clash that led to Akhilesh’s expulsion from the party.
Lalu, who shares personal kinship with Mulayam’s family, called him and Akhilesh separately a number of times on Saturday morning and impressed upon them the need to stay together and keep Samajwadi Party together in order to keep BJP out of reach of power in UP.
“I called Mulayam Singhjee. I told him that he is the tallest leader in UP and that he had himself made his son chief minister. I told him it is his responsibility to bring back harmony in the family and the party. I urged him to speak to Akhilesh so as not to lose an almost certain victory (in upcoming Assembly polls)… I am glad that everything is fine now,” said the RJD chief after Akhilesh and his close aide Ram Gopal Yadav were both taken back into the party a day after being expelled for six years.
Lalu’s youngest daughter Raj Laxmi is married to Tej Pratap, the grand nephew of Mulayam Singh Yadav. With the marriage solemnised in February 2015, Lalu and Mulayam became ‘samdhi’ of each other and displayed greater political solidarity despite years of rivalries.
“I also called Akhilesh and asked him to have patience in his dealings (sanyam se kaam lijiye). I asked him to go directly to his father and sort out all differences in discussions with him,” said Lalu, visibly glad that Samajwadi Party was saved from a split just before the all-important Assembly polls. “Now they are all ready to jump into the polls… I am happy that their differences have been amicably removed,” said Lalu.
The RJD chief said he would himself campaign for Samajwadi Party candidates in UP. “The future of India depends so much on Uttar Pradesh. It was my duty to offer sane advice to them,” said Lalu. In a
tweet, he said: “Akhilesh will win and form an SP government in UP. BJP will remain at No. 4”.