Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav on Monday accused his uncle Shivpal Yadav of working on the BJP's "directions" to target Yashwant Sinha, saying the opposition's Presidential candidate had in the past called SP patron Mulayam Singh Yadav an "ISI agent".
The Presidential election, which was held on Monday, came as the latest flashpoint in the running feud between the two SP leaders.
While Akhilesh is rooting for Yashwant Sinha, Shivpal, who has been elected an MLA on SP ticket, has publicly announced his support for NDA nominee Droupadi Murmu.
Speaking to reporters at the Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Bhavan, Akhilesh said, "There was an 'ishara' (direction) from Delhi (by the BJP) after which a deputy chief minister tweeted an old newspaper article highlighting Sinha's 'ISI agent' comment on Mulayam and then it was circulated (by Shivpal Yadav)".
Hitting back at his uncle, the SP chief reminded him about the language used by the saffron party for "Netaji" (Mulayam Singh Yadav) and the SP.
"Chacha (Shivpal Yadav) should know the language of the BJP during the recent UP polls. The language of the BJP has always been bad towards Netaji and the Samajwadis," Akhilesh said.
Shivpal, who had turned up in the assembly for the poll, told reporters, "A 'pakka' (staunch) Samajwadi and a diehard follower of Netaji will never tolerate anyone terming him an ISI agent and will never vote for that person.
"He (a supporter) will never support the allegations made against Netaji. Yashwant Sinha had made allegations against Netaji when he was the defence minister and Pakistan was trying to attack India. At that point of time, Netaji had said if war broke out, it would not be fought on India's soil but on the enemy's soil." He added, "As a Lok Sabha MP, Netaji had always urged the government to eliminate terrorism and had extended his support (in doing so)." Amid bickering between Akhilesh and Shivpal, party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav cast his vote in the Parliament.
Mulayam Singh is the MP from Mainpuri Lok Sabha seat. The ailing leader turned up in a wheelchair to exercise his vote in the national capital. His preference for the country's top constitutional post is, however, unknown.
Akhilesh and Shivpal, who came together in the February-March Uttar Pradesh polls after falling apart in 2016, turned hostile to each other again after the SP's debacle.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)