Am with SP 'for now', says Shivpal Yadav on 63rd birthday

Lucknow, Jan 22 Shivpal Singh Yadav, the estranged uncle of former Chief Minister and Samajwadi Party (SP) head Akhilesh Yadav, on Monday trashed speculation about joining the Congress and said he was "wedded to the wishes and commands" of his elder brother Mulayam Singh Yadav.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of his 63rd birthday celebrations in the state capital, Shivpal, former PWD Minister and former SP chief, said that "for now" he was with the Samajwadi Party and would take an "appropriate decision in the interest of the people and the state" before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

He also indirectly blamed his estranged nephew Akhilesh Yadav for the mess in the SP and said "people who are neither taking decisions nor allowing others to take were weakening the party", which had once struggled for the poor, marginalised, backward and the downtrodden.

Shivpal Yadav said that lawlessness was growing in the state and that despite graft being on the rise, the SP was not able to raise the issues as the principal opposition party in the state assembly. He also cut a cake, surrounded by his supporters who hailed him as the 'Vikas Purush' (Man of development) of the state.

There has been speculation that Shivpal Singh Yadav was feeling suffocated in the SP, a party in which he enjoyed the number two status after his brother Mulayam Singh, until he was edged out by Akhilesh Yadav in a power tussle in 2016. The 63-year-old is currently merely a legislator from Jaswantnagar and has no party position.

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