Mulayam's attack on Akhilesh may help the rivals more than him
Lucknow: The statement of Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav that his chief minister son Akhilesh Yadav was ” anti-Muslim” which he has obviously made to keep his Muslim base intact may not favour either of the two but the third force, the Bahujan Samaj Party which is trying its best to woo them.
The logic behind is that Muslims have been largely backing the party which has an edge over others and can defeat the BJP. In case of the formal division in the party both the groups will lose importance. Without unity the two factions cannot pose a bigger challenge to the Hindutva forces.
This belief whether right or wrong can drive a good many members of the minority community to the BSP which will try to exploit the situation to its best advantage. Already, the party has tried to impress the community by allotting more tickets to Muslim candidates than to those belonging to other castes and communities.
The party derives maximum support from the Dalit community. Still, it has selected ten candidates less from this community than the Muslim community. The party has,thus, shown its preference which may bring the community closer. Accounting for 19 per cent of total votes in the state the community will play a major role in the upcoming election.
The BSP has held second position in the last two assembly elections in the state. As such, there was a greater need for unity in the party. In any case an attack on the other faction can only help the rival party. It can only make the BSP happy.
Mulayam has taken several measures to appease the community. It has taken action against Kar Sevaks in Ayodhya and spoken against masjid demolition which are pleasing to the community. Even then they would not like him fighting with his own party men especially his son as that will weaken his position among party supporters.
Akhilesh has proved his mettle by attracting majority of party legislators and members of parliament to his meeting, This statement may attract some more. A senior leader like him should have avoided this kind of direct attack.
His list submitted to him may contain less number of Muslim but he has not released any list which means he has not finalised the list yet. To call him anti-Muslim at this stage on the basis of the list is ,therefore, premature and untimely.
This is also in a bad taste for another reason. Mulayam’s enemy number one has been either BJP or the BSP and still is. By attacking the faction led by Akhilesh he will not gain much and indirectly help these two old rivals. He has already weakened his position by separating from Akhilesh group.
Different symbols are likely to be allotted to the two factions which will create problems for both. So, It is not a time to fight with each other.