Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav dropped a bombshell on Friday evening expelling his son and chief minister Akhilesh Yadav from the party for six years just ahead of crucial elections in Uttar Pradesh. He has also expelled his cousin and senior party leader Ram Gopal Yadav for the second time in months, accused him of "spoiling the career of the chief minister." The Samajwadi Party chief said both Akhilesh and Ram Gopal have been sacked for weakening the party.
Flanked by Brother Shivpal Yadav, who has been at loggerheads with the Chief Minister, Mulayam said he had taken the action against Akhilesh and Ramgopal to save the party which he had built through hard efforts. He said the party will decide on the new chief minister of Uttar Pradesh.
Ram Gopal Yadav had, earlier in the day, called a national convention of the Samajwadi Party on January 1 following a rift over the list of SP candidates finalised by Mulayam Singh for assembly polls
Hitting out at Ram Gopal Yadav, Mulayam said "no one has the right to call national executive meeting" other than the party chief.
Mulayam also accused Ram Gopal Yadav of hurting the interests of chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and misleading him.
The SP supremo also hit out at Akhilesh Yadav for siding with Ram Gopal Yadav in the party infighting.
"Akhilesh does not understand that Ram Gopal is trying to destroy his future," Mulayam said.
Earlier, he also issued a show-cause notice to his son for releasing a parallel list of candidates for the state elections.
A show-cause notice was also issued to expelled leader Ram Gopal Yadav, for speaking against the party line in the media.
Ram Gopal Yadav calls expulsion unconstitutional
Ram Gopal Yadav said it is unconstitutional to expel anybody without hearing to them just hours after issuing show-cause notice.
He questioned Samajwadi Party patrirach's decision saying, Netaji isn't aware of party's constitution.
The Rajya Sabha member called Mulayam's decision to expel him and Akhilesh as "illegal", and accuse the party chief of indulging in "unconstitutional" activities.
Defiant Ramgopal said was still the general secretary of SP and the party meet called by him on Sunday will take place in any eventuality.
The Samajwadi Party's internal strife gives an added advantage to the BJP and Mayawati's BSP in the mega battle for Uttar Pradesh, being pegged as the semi-final before national elections in 2019. Elections to UP's 403 assembly seats are expected to be announced by the Election Commission any day now.