Samajwadi Party will go it alone in Varanasi, Mr. Yadav said and named Kailash Chaurasia as its candidate for the seat.

Samajwadi Party chief and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has ruled out the possibility of fielding a common candidate against Bharatiya Janata Party’s Prime Ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi in Varanasi, as well as against Rajnath Singh in Lucknow. “

The Samajwadi Party, banking on the strength of its workers, will go it alone in Varanasi”, Mr. Yadav said.

Emphasising that the Samajwadi Party is contesting in Varanasi and Kailash Chaurasia is its candidate, Mr. Yadav said candidates have not been fielded by the party for two Lok Sabha seats (Rae Bareli and Amethi ). “ The party is contesting from the remaining constituencies in Uttar Pradesh," the Chief Minister emphasized as he dismissed talks in political circles of fielding a joint candidate against Mr. Modi.

The Chief Minister described the Samajwadi Party as the “biggest secular party” and said all secular –minded people should support the SP candidate, Kailash Chaurasia in Varanasi. “The Samajwadi Party will not ask the other parties for support in Varanasi,” Mr. Yadav told reporters at the party headquarters here on Tuesday. The Chief Minister clarified that the SP Government’s achievements will hold it in good stead and would provide the people with an opportunity at the ground level to assess its performance.

Taking a dig at the BJP, Mr. Yadav said the graph of some parties which had climbed is rapidly coming down. He said the BJP earlier used to talk about the Gujarat development model, but when it “came to Uttar Pradesh, it adopted the communal path”. Without mentioning the “Har Har Modi, Ghar Ghar Modi” slogan, the Chief Minister ridiculed the BJP for backtracking on its slogan. Mr. Yadav alleged that the BJP used religion for political gains.

Simultaneously rejecting the possibility of fielding a joint candidate against BJP president Rajnath Singh in Lucknow, Mr. Yadav said the Samajwadi Party has a strong claim in the State capital. “The Government has done significant development works in Lucknow,” the Chief Minister said.

To a query on AAP president Arvind Kejriwal, who addressed a rally in Varanasi on Tuesday, Mr. Yadav dismissed Mr. Kejriwal and AAP. “The Aam Aadmi party has copied the Samajwadi Party ‘topi’ ( cap) with white in place of the SP’s colour red.”

Meanwhile, the BSP MP from Gautam Buddha Nagar, Surendra Singh Nagar, has joined the Samajwadi Party. He was inducted into the party by Mr. Yadav. Mr. Nagar was denied ticket by BSP president Mayawati in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Former BSP MLA from Jaunpur Sri Ram Yadav was also inducted into the SP.