Other States

Mulayam’s birthday bash draws flak from Opposition

Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh celebrating his 76th birthday at a grand show at Saifai in Uttar Pradesh on Saturday.Photo: Rajeev Bhatt

Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh celebrating his 76th birthday at a grand show at Saifai in Uttar Pradesh on Saturday.Photo: Rajeev Bhatt  

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Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh’s massive birthday bash has drawn flak from the Opposition which on Sunday questioned the “ostentatious” display of wealth and expenditure running into crores of rupees when the State was grappling with drought situation.

However, the ruling party dismissed the criticism saying while people were displaying their “love” for Mulayam, the Opposition was indulging in petty politics over the issue.

Renowned composer-singer A. R. Rahman on Saturday night performed on the second day of the three-day bash to celebrate the 76th birthday of Mulayam.

Hundreds of welcome gates and huge hoardings have come up on all the roads leading to Mulayam’s native place Saifai, around 200 km from Lucknow. Cakes weighing 76 kg were cut in various districts by party men to celebrate day.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said while his party respects the senior leader and wishes him long life for service to the nation, “it is their responsibility to act by example, to set the example to the whole nation and to the people of the country”.

“That example cannot be of ostentatious display of wealth, of garish expenditure running into hundreds of crores which may obviously be better utilised for the welfare of the poor people of the State reeling under a series of misfortunes.

“So I think we can only request and ensure this is not repeated in the future,” he said in Delhi.

The BJP said the money spent on the celebrations could have been used for the drought-affected districts.

“Fifty of the 75 districts in Uttar Pradesh have been declared drought-hit and the money could have been distributed among the affected farmers,” BJP spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathak said. -- PTI

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 8:51:21 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/mulayams-birthday-bash-draws-flak-from-opposition/article7906808.ece

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