New Delhi, Nov. 7: The new-found Samajwadi Party-BJP camaraderie has already started souring with Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi firing the first salvo on behalf of his party against Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav.
“Under his leadership, there is communal tension and violence and this is a cause of worry,” said the BJP general secretary, referring to the burning to death of seven Dalits in Unnao district in central Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday night.
“Mulayam is only worried about the interests of capitalists but not the poor and Dalits. His government is a government of the capitalists and a handful of privileged and well-connected families and it is being run only to profit them. The chief minister should consider the Unnao massacre as an ominous portend,” said Naqvi, the BJP spokesperson.
BJP sources at the Centre and in Uttar Pradesh cited several reasons for the party’s criticism of the Samajwadi chief. Mulayam Singh had reportedly offered tickets to three of the 28 candidates nominated by the BJP for the legislative council elections to be held shortly and also assured them of victory on the claim of a comfortable majority in the Assembly, local bodies and panchayats.
Another sore point was last night’s dismissal of more than 100 nominated BJP corporators through an executive order issued by the chief minister — a move that was brought to the notice of central leaders by state BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Kalraj Mishra. The sacked corporators are likely to contest the order in Allahabad High Court, according to sources.
State BJP cadre were reportedly unhappy with Delhi’s projection of Mulayam Singh as a new ally who could become a part of the NDA after the next Lok Sabha elections or even have a pre-poll alliance with them. Sources said they were upset with reports that the Samajwadi would indirectly help their party in the Madhya Pradesh elections by putting up candidates poised to give the Congress “a run for its money”.
“It looks like the BJP is destined to become an appendage and erase its own identity in Uttar Pradesh. Our cadre demanded it was high time we pulled up our socks and thought of the next Lok Sabha elections,” said the sources.
The party planned to take up the government’s move to lease sick state-owned sugar mills to private parties already in the business. “This is suicidal for the cane growers because they have not been paid their dues for years by private mill owners. At least the government is more accountable to the law and the voters,” said sources.
The central BJP does not share the state’s concern. Delhi had its own take on Naqvi’s attack, though state party leaders were given the go-ahead to oppose Mulayam Singh “within reasonable limits”, said sources.
“If the so-called BJP-Samajwadi closeness is played up too much, then Mulayam Singh is of no use to us in the coming Assembly elections. His strategy is to break the Congress’ votes, especially those of the Muslims. So they must be convinced that the BJP and Samajwadi are still adversaries,” said a party leader.