Akhilesh's party workers throw money in the air to celebrate

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Moradabad:  Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav is blue in the face insisting that his Samajwadi Party is no more the haven of rowdies, but his party workers are clearly functioning on an agenda quite their own. On Tuesday, vintage SP behaviour was on display in Moradabad as supporters of a party leader celebrated his promotion.

Haji Ikram Qureshi, who was recently made the chairman of the essential commodities corporation and given a minister of state rank, was in a mood to celebrate. So he set out with his supporters in a procession. Scores of cars lined up on the roads and the jubiliant supporters were caught on camera throwing money in the air and then mocking a policeman by snatching his cap.

And as though to underscore that this was not an isolated incident, in Bulandshehar, nearly 120 kilometres away, members of the SP youth wing reportedly teased college girls and forced them to wave Samajwadi Party flags and shout slogans. The unruly crowd of men, holding SP flags, entered the DAV Degree College and allegedly misbehaved with the electoral officer, Dr Vikas Sharma, who was there to file nominations for student body elections. On their way out they teased the girls and then hit the streets in a noisy procession dancing to loud music, shouting slogans.

In both cases, the workers held up traffic on busy roads.

The Bulandshehar police said they knew nothing of the incident. "We do not know of any such procession, if there was something that happened, then we will act against them," Shrikant Singh, Superintendent of Police, City, Bulandsheher, said.

Mr Yadav, in his seven months of rule, has had a tough time keeping his flock in check. There have been incidents of alleged bribery, unruly behavior at official functions and firing at weddings. An SP member was recently also accused of attacking a journalist.

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