Congress on Friday debunked suggestions from the Samajwadi Party projecting Mulayam Singh Yadav as the…
Rajesh Kumar Singh,Lucknow: Hinting at bonhomie with the Congress ahead of next year’s assembly election in Uttar Pradesh, chief minister
Akhilesh Yadav said on Thursday it was alright to be friends with that party’s vice-president Rahul Gandhi, who was a “good boy”.
“There is nothing wrong if two good people are friends,” he said while addressing media persons after a cabinet meeting.
“I wish Rahul stays more in UP. He is a good boy and we can be friends,” Yadav said in reply to a question about Gandhi organising ‘khat panchayats’ in various districts.
The CM also briefed the media about important cabinet decisions, including a plan to distribute free smartphones.
“Recently, I saw a photograph in which a farmer was sitting on a cot holding a smartphone in his hand. He was looking at the picture of bicycle on the screen of his laptop. There can be a relationship between ‘khat’ and cycle,” he said.
Yadav parried a question on whether his affability with Gandhi meant a prospective pre-poll alliance with the Congress in the state. “I will not go into the details, but you can ponder on friendship of two good people (Rahul and Akhilesh),” he said.
In public meetings organised during the ‘kisan yatra’ as well as ‘khat panchayats’, Gandhi has been hitting out at the NDA government at the centre and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Congress leader avoiding criticism of the Samajwadi Party government in UP has forced BJP state president Keshav Prasad Maurya to launch counter-attack on Gandhi’s party.
“Why is Rahul silent on the misdeeds of the SP?” said Maurya. “He is blaming the central government for the misery of farmers and backwardness in UP.”
On his part, Akhilesh Yadav took pot shots at the media over its reporting a Gandhi rally in Deoria, where Congress workers stole ‘khats’ (cots) amid a chaos.