Akhilesh sacks uncle Shivpal, 4 other ministers from UP Cabinet

Akhilesh Yadav
In a swift and sudden move, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Sunday sacked his uncle Shivpal Singh Yadav as a senior minister in his Cabinet.

 
Akhilesh also sacked four other ministers -- Narad Rai, Om Prakash, Shadab Fatima, Gayatri Prasad Prajapati -- all considered close to Shivpal Singh Yadav, who is also the state unit chief of the Samajwadi Party (SP).

 
The development comes as a jolt to the efforts at truce between the two warring factions in the ruling Samajwadi Party.
It indicates the party is heading towards something big, sources told IANS.

 
Though Shivpal, the younger brother of SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav, had met Akhilesh to personally invite him to a meeting of SP district and city units presidents, the Chief Minister kept away, indicating all was not well in the party despite repeated claims by its senior leaders to the contrary. These delegates had later met Akhilesh separately.

Akhilesh, with whom Shivpal is engaged in a running feud over the last few months, had recently made it clear in a letter to Mulayam that he would be proceeding on his 'rath yatra' on November 3 to highlight the development work done by his government, in a clear indication that he would skip that event too.

With the tense stand-off between Akhilesh and Shivpal continuing, speculations about a possible split in the party are rife.

As a crisis-like situation obtained in the party, several top leaders including Beni Prasad Verma, Naresh Agarwal and state Assembly Speaker Mata Prasad Pandey met Mulayam earlier in the day. They were later closeted with Akhilesh in order to bring about rapprochement in the SP's first family.

Meanwhile, in a move that could further widen the divide between Akhilesh and Shivpal, the latter, who is the state president of the Samajwadi Party, has appointed chiefs of various youth fronts of the party.

The development came amid demands for reinstating the expelled presidents of these youth fronts who were considered close to the Chief Minister.

According to a party release, Abhishek Singh Ashu has been made president of Samajwadi Yuvjan Sabha, Farhat Hasan Khan state president of SP Minorities sabha, Anil Verma state president of Mulayam Singh Yadav Youth Brigade, Vijay Yadav president of Lohia Vahini, Abhishek Tripathi general secretary of Lohia Vahini and Ashfiqur Rehman general secretary of Yuvjan Sabha.


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