Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav seems to have cornered his father and Samajwadi Party (SP) co-founder Mulayam Singh Yadav by not only relegating his father to the position of "marg darshak" [meaning mentor or guide] and assuming the post of SP national president, but also getting banks to freeze all accounts of the party.
Akhilesh's camp within the SP has received signed affidavits showing support from 210 of the 229 MLAs and 60 MLCs, meaning if the Election Commission of India asks him to show the numbers to prove that he is the leader of the party, he can do exactly that. An IANS report said: "Barring a few family members from his village Saifai in Etawah and not more than two dozen legislators, Mulayam Singh, the family patriarch, seems to be isolated, party leaders admit."
And now, in another masterstroke, Akhilesh has rendered his father as well as his uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav financially disabled. The UP CM has asked banks to freeze all accounts belonging to the SP, which were until now being accessed by Shivpal.
The report IANS said: "As a result, more than Rs 500 crore belonging to the party have been put on hold." This means Shivpal will no more be able to operate them — at least until the accounts are unfrozen — and therefore cannot turn the supporters of Akhilesh with the lure of money.
The report added: "Mulayam Singh is left with only a handful of diehard loyalists like brother Shivpal Yadav, Rajya Sabha MP Amar Singh and actor-turned-politician Jaya Prada. All eyes are on the Election Commission to see to who it will allot the 'cycle' symbol — the Mulayam or Akhilesh faction."
Assembly elections in UP will take place in seven phases -- on February 11, February 15, February 19, February 23, February 27, March 4 and March 8. The counting will take place on March 11, along with that of the other poll-bound states.