Mulayam Singh also used a comment by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, without taking names, to rip into his son: “A big leader of this country said one who can’t honour promises to his father, how can he be there for the people?”
In a tweet after his father’s umpteenth public slight, Akhilesh Yadav commented: “Netaji zindabad, Samajwadi Party zindabad!”
Mulayam Singh, who was sidelined by his son before the Uttar Pradesh election earlier this year and left to a mentorship role in the party he founded 25 years ago, was expected to announce a new outfit. He and his brother Shivpal Yadav had stayed away from a big Samajwadi meeting saying they were not invited.
The new party was to be announced with the Lok Dal, whose president Sunil Singh was quoted by the Press Trust of India as saying yesterday: “Mulayam will hold a press conference at the Lohia Trust office to announce a new party with Lok Dal.”
But today, Mulayam Singh simply urged “people of a Samajwadi mindset to join us” and told reporters: “I am not forming any new party as of now.”
Asked to comment on Akhilesh Yadav’s claim that he had his father’s blessings, the Samajwadi Party patron said: “If he has said that, it must be true.”
The tone quickly turned sharp and resentful, recalling Akhilesh’s move to shake up the party just before the UP polls, which saw the Samajwadi Party losing power and the BJP winning an outstanding mandate.
“He told me that he would make me president within three months after the election. He who can’t honour his word, who betrays his father…” Mulayam Singh said.
Making it clear that he was not ready to mend bridges with his son, he added: “No one can say for sure how long differences will remain between father and son.”