Samajwadi Party leader Shivpal Yadav on Tuesday rubbished SBSP chief O P Rajbhar's claim that several SP MLAs are thinking of switching sides, on the lines of the recent Maharashtra developments.
He also said that Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar has always emerged stronger whenever his party faces such crisis, and compared Pawar's working style with that of SP founder Mulayam Singh Yadav.
"His (Sharad Pawar's) style of working is like that of 'Netaji' (Mulayam Singh Yadav). And as far as I know him, he has never yielded nor he felt afraid. Whenever elections will be held in Maharashtra, he will emerge stronger, and win the polls with a majority," Yadav told PTI when asked about the political developments in Maharashtra.
The veteran SP leader said the BJP wants to "finish opposition parties, but they will unite to contest the 2024 Lok Sabha polls".
Yadav's remarks come days after the political upheaval in Maharashtra, in which the NCP saw a split with party chief Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar and eight other MLAs joining the Eknath Shinde government.
On recent claims by Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party (SBSP) chief Rajbhar that a number of (SP) MLAs are in touch with him and Uttar Pradesh will see a similar political coup like the one in Maharashtra, Yadav said, "You know him (Rajbhar) very well. He has always been in touch with the BJP... Whenever the election approaches, his shop starts functioning." To a question of NISHAD Party chief Sanjay Nishad saying that if Shivpal Yadav is willing to be a part of the NDA, then he is welcome, Yadav said, "I have not met Sanjay Nishad. But, we know the BJP very well. A senior BJP leader was in touch with me. But, we are 'samajwadi', and they (BJP) will not be able to budge us." When asked about the upcoming meeting of the opposition parties in Bengaluru, he said that the "Opposition will unite in a much stronger manner." Attacking the BJP, Yadav said the saffron party has not done any development of the state or that of the country. "The BJP leaders spread corruption. They have only created problems before the public," he said.
When asked about the BJP leaders' claim that he has not got the place in the SP which he deserves, Yadav said, "We are together. Earlier, we all worked with 'Netaji', and we have started working together once again. The SP will strongly contest the (Lok Sabha) polls in 2024 and will defeat the BJP." After being at loggerheads since 2017 with his nephew and SP chief Akhilesh Yadav and launching his political outfit, Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohia), in 2019, Shivpal Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav decided to mend fences just before the 2022 Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections.
Shivpal Yadav had contested the 2022 Assembly polls on the Samajwadi Party symbol.