Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav and his estranged uncle and Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party chief Shivpal Yadav could contest the 2022 Assembly elections together.
Extending an olive branch to uncle Shivpal on Diwali, Akhilesh has promised a cabinet berth for the PSP founder and also announced to leave the Jaswantnagar Assembly seat for him.
Akhilesh’s prospective offer comes days after the bypolls and ahead of the 2022 Uttar Pradesh assembly elections. Earlier, the SP had withdrawn its plea for disqualification of Shivpal Yadav from the UP Assembly. Yadav continues to be an SP legislator from Jaswantnagar.
Speaking in Etawah on Saturday, the Samajwadi Party chief said, “SP will try to join hands with smaller outfits but no alliance with any big political parties. I have said it earlier and repeating today, Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party will also be adjusted and Jaswantnagar has already been left for their leader. In the future, we will also give a cabinet berth to him.”
SP founder Mulayam's younger brother and son Akhilesh had parted ways ahead of the 2017 Assembly elections. While PSP couldn’t win any seat then and even in the 2019 general elections, it hurt the prospects of the SP on many seats which it contested.
Akhilesh had forged an alliance with the Congress for the 2017 state polls and with Mayawati’s BSP in 2019 Loksabha elections, both had turned out to be disasters. While the SP-Congress won only 55 seats in the 403-member Assembly, the SP-BSP combine could win in 15 of the state's 80 Lok Sabha constituencies.
A political observer said, "It seems the uncle and nephew have both realized by now that they had suffered a lot after separation and coming together is the only way to keep them afloat."