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SP parliamentary board sets aside merger with Ansari’s party

Lucknow : Bowing to the wishes of Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, Uttar Pradesh’s ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) on Saturday took a u-turn on the merger of mafia don Mukhtar Ansari’s Quami Ekta Dal (QED) with it, setting it aside.

At the parliamentary board meeting of the party here on Saturday, it was decided that the merger be negated. A decision was also taken to revoke the dismissal of senior cabinet minister Balram Yadav.

Before the meeting, Akhilesh Yadav had made it clear that he will not pull back on the matter and had openly said that “mafia have no place in the party”.

Party general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav, after the meeting, announced that the feedback of the merger was not good hence it was being set aside.

The decision of u-turn is being seen in political circles here as a rebuff to PWD Minister Shivpal Singh Yadav, the uncle of Akhilesh Yadav, who had got the merger through.

Shivpal Yadav had in fact, told the press that the merger had the sanction of the party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav.

It was also decided that the chief minister would embark on a Samajwadi Rath Yatra across the state in the run-up to the state assembly polls early 2017.