The Samajwadi Party (SP) yet again on Thursday distanced itself from the Indian National Congress’ (INC) Bharat Jodo Yatra with its party president Akhilesh Yadav stating that he would discuss within his group, about the invitation extended by the grand old party, to attend the concluding event on January 30 in Srinagar. He would then decide whether to attend it or not, he said while confirming his participation at the Bharat Rashtra Samiti (BRS) rally in Khammam, organised by Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao on January 18.
The BRS rally is likely to be attended by leaders like West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who are pushing for a non-BJP, non-Congress, national alternative.
“I have received the Congress’ invitation. We will discuss within the party and then decide,” said Mr. Akhilesh at a press conference organised on the occasion of Vivekanand Jayanti where he also launched a Samajwadi calender. The former Chief Minister added that he received the invitation for the BRS rally in Telangana and would attend it.
Earlier also, when the Rahul Gandhi-led Bharat Jodo Yatra was about to enter U.P., Mr. Yadav had said that the BJP and the Congress were the same. In U.P. all the Opposition parties were wary of the Yatra and no top Opposition face like Mr. Yadav, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati or Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) supermo Jayant Chaudhary joined it. Many believed, the route of the Yatra which passed through two districts Baghpat and Shamli having a sizeable Muslim population (roughly 30%), also made Opposition parties skeptical about it as they believed it was an attempt by the grand old party to make inroads among the minority electorate.
In U.P., the Yatra covered a distance of 120 kilometres. The grand old party’s Yatra passed through Sisana, Sarurpur and Barot in Baghpat Kandhla, Uncha village and Kairana in Shamli before entering Haryana.
“I have received the Congress’ invitation”Akhilesh YadavSamajwadi Party president