The second time this year both senior leaders won’t be present at the party’s national convention
Under Akhilesh Yadav’s leadership, the recently trounced Samajwadi Party is set to hold a national convention in September in Lucknow without the rival factions, an event that could intensify the Yadav family battle. This scheduled event will be the second this year without former president Mulayam Singh Yadav and his brother Shivpal Yadav.
The party’s leaders will discuss strategies to prepare for 2019 general elections and conduct a major reshuffle in the ranks soon after the convention, sources told ThePrint.
Post the convention there will be a reshuffle in the rank and file of the party after which action will taken all those who worked against the party or worked with the rival Mulayam-Shivpal group to sabotage the chances of party candidates.
Shivpal is a party MLA from Jaswant Nagar, and despite the party’s appeal to vote for UPA candidate Meira Kumar in this week’s presidential election, he voted for the NDA candidate Ramnath Kovind at the behest of Mulayam.
On several occasions after the assembly debacle, both Mulayam and Shivpal have openly blamed Akhilesh for the defeat.
However, sources reveal that there is no plan to take any action against Shivpal. Shivpal has been talking in recent weeks about launching his own party backed by Mulayam Singh, and the Akhilesh camp is anxiously waiting for the announcement. Akhilesh has made it obvious to close party leaders that he is willing to continue without father and uncle.
On January 1, the party organised a national convention, where Akhilesh was anointed as the national president, replacing Mulayam. An amendment was also made in the party constitution so that a national convention will take place once in five years, instead of three years as it states presently.
“That was an urgent session called by the party under certain circumstances,” said a party leader. “The upcoming session is the one which party holds once in three years.”
The date hasn’t been finalised yet, but it will be held in the first week of September.
The party started a membership drive on April 15 after the Assembly election and Akhilesh will take stock of the drive on July 21. Sources say the party has added around 50 lakh new members, of which 35 lakh were added through paper forms and a little over 14 lakh through missed calls.
Once the drive concludes, the party will start working on the agenda of the convention and assign responsibilities to several leaders.