New Delhi: Samajwadi Party Supremo Akhilesh Yadav today met with senior party leader Azam Khan, who was recently released from jail. Akhilesh claimed they hadn’t met for three years.
Akhilesh Yadav visited a Delhi hospital and made an inquiry about Azam’s health. They had a marathon discussion of two hours amid rumours of a rift.
As per the sources, they talked about the Rampur Lok Sabha byelection and the upcoming Rajya Sabha polls.
Azam Khan was elected as the Lok Sabha MP from the Rampur seat but left after he became an MLA. His support for any Samajwadi Party candidate will give an extra yard to the SP candidate. Bye polls for the Rampur Lok Sabha seat are due this month.
The Samajwadi Party has enough MLAs in the state assembly that the party will send three of its members to the Upper House. Sources say the top leadership is worried any rift with Azam Khan may impact the voting preferences of MLAs loyal to him.
Azam Khan, one of the Samajwadi Party’s well-known Muslim faces, is reportedly not happy with Akhilesh Yadav, but on record, he has denied it.
He did not take part in the Uttar Pradesh assembly session for two days last week and had also given a warning about joining another party.
“I have no complaints against him (Akhilesh Yadav). I am not unhappy; I can’t afford to be unhappy. I am too small to advise Akhilesh Yadav,” Mr Khan said at Delhi’s Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, where he was admitted for routine check-ups.
Mr Khan said he had no contact with Mr Yadav while in prison, so the question of a rift doesn’t arise.
“I am not a neta (politician). I don’t consider myself a Samajwadi Party leader. I have always been a party worker and will remain a party worker, “said Mr Khan.