Senior Samajwadi Party leader Ramgopal Yadav today termed the Akhilesh Yadav-Shivpal Yadav reunion as enduring and slammed the BJP for calling it a "drama" out of fear of losing the Mainpuri bypoll, saying everything looks like drama for people adept in theatrics.
The SP secretary general also took a swipe at the ruling party for making claims that the lotus would bloom in the seat represented by Mulayam Singh Yadav in the past, asserting they are "living in a fool's paradise".
He also hit out at the BJP for terming the selection of Dimple Yadav as the party candidate in Mainpuri as part of "parivarvad" (dynastic politics), asking if there was no parivarvad in that party.
"The BJP people enact dramas, and hence everything to them appears to be a drama. They also perceive the truth and reality as drama. Everything of theirs is false, and is a drama," Ramgopal Yadav told PTI in an interview The senior SP leader said the coming together of family members after burying their hatchets would continue in the future too.
The latest reunion of "chacha-bhatija" (Shivpal-Akhilesh) came after days of suspense and the Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party (Lohia) president said a telephone call from daughter-in-law Dimple Yadav broke the ice.
This is the fourth time that the warring uncle-nephew have joined hands since they separated from each other six years back.
Rivals are claiming that the latest reunion would not last long and like in the past the two would again fall apart after the Mainpuri bypoll.
Besides display of bonhomie with Akhilesh touching the feet of Shivpal at the dias during an election meeting in Jaswantnagar recently, the broader reconciliation in the Yadav was for everyone to see when Shivpal touched the feet of Ramgopal Yadav at another event.
There was buzz in political circles that ties between Akhilesh and Shivpal came under strain mainly because of differences between the PSPL head and Ramgopal Yadav after a bitter power tussle in Mulayam Singh Yadav's political family starting in 2016. While Shivpal Yadav is the younger brother of SP founder Mulayam Singh Yadav, Ramgopal Yadav is his cousin.
To BJP leaders claim that lotus (poll symbol of the BJP) will bloom in Mainpuri, and the last bastion of the SP will fall, the SP Rajya Sabha member said, "BJP leaders are living in a fool's paradise. The Samajwadi Party is going to win all the five assembly segments of Mainpuri parliamentary constituency, and you will see the results on December 8."
On accusations that the SP was indulging in 'parivarvad' by fielding Dimple Yadav as its candidate, the SP secretary general said, "They (BJP) have given nothing to the people except false promises, so what will they say? They will speak about Hindus and Muslims or say there is a 'parivarvad', as if there is no 'parivarvad' in their party."
Ramgopal Yadav said the bypoll is very important with both the ruling party and the SP using all its power to win. "The SP workers are considering this bypoll as their own election. This is such a constituency, where our workers will try their level best to ensure that the voters have exercised their voting rights, and the winning margin increases (this time)," he said.
He alleged that the administration will try to obstruct SP voters from exercising their franchise and that they have already started arresting party workers in bailable offences, in which one could not be sent to jail.
"They (SP workers) are being made to sit at police stations, and bail is being denied to them," he alleged.
Ramgopal Yadav asserted that the SP would foil every "sarkari tikram" (tricks of the government) and appealed to party workers to consider the elections as a matter of their "own personal honour" and ensure that each and every vote is cast in favour of Dimple Yadav.
On whether the Samajwadi Party is making efforts to save its last bastion, the national general secretary of the party said, "This place has never faced any sort of problems till now. Only once when Balram Singh contested on a Congress ticket (1984), that was the only year when the Samajwadi Party lost the elections".
Expressing confidence that the victory margin in the bypolls will be much greater than that in the 2019 polls, he said, "In the last Lok Sabha elections, all of us were busy, and some things had happened, and there were a number of factors. At this point of time, there is no need to discuss those factors, as they do not exist now. And, the winning margin will definitely be more than that of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections."
He was apparently referring to the separation of Akhilesh and Shivpal then and the BJP taking advantage of the fissure in the Yadav family.
The bypoll has been necessitated due to the death of Mulayam Singh Yadav last month.
Polling in Mainpuri will be held on December 5, while counting of votes will take place on December 8.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)