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SP Asks Amar Singh To Resign His Rajya Sabha Seat

PTI 27 Jan 2010, 20:34:19 PM IST

Samajwadi Party on Wednesdaty appointed Mohan Singh as its general secretary and spokesman in place of Amar Singh and he lost no time to demand resignation of his predecessor from Rajya Sabha on moral grounds.

Mohan Singh, who was appointed by party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav in place of Amar Singh, told reporters, "Since Amar Singh has resigned as party's general secretary, member of parliamentary board and as spokesperson, he has already detached himself from the party.

"Rajya Sabha membership is given by the party and, therefore, he should resign from Rajya Sabha also."

Mohan Singh's remarks came shortly after his appointment which coincided with Amar Singh's 54th birthday today.

"Amar Singh is now part of history. In political parties, people keep coming and going. It is an ongoing process. Parties which understand the common man's issues continue to prosper. One major question before the SP now is how to make people aware of its socialist face," the new spokesman said.

He said it will take sometime for the party to regain its socialist image.

Mohan Singh, however, said Amar Singh alone should not be held responsible for the party's image of being associated with the "rich and mighty only."

People felt that the SP has become a party of corporates. We too are responsible for being mute spectators" on the issue, he said.

Amar Singh had recently quit all party posts over differences with relatives of the SP chief.

On whether SP will withdraw its outside support to the UPA-II, Mohan Singh said a decision on this will be taken later.

"One person, without taking the party's opinion, had gone ahead and announced SP's support to the UPA-II. We don't want to trivialise the party by taking back the support hurriedly. Such decisions take time," he said.

On Amar Singh's charge that he had been with several parties, he said he never changed parties individually.

"My decision to go along with Janata Party and later with Janata Dal was taken collectively along with Mulayam Singh Yadav and others. I never changed parties individually."

He said with the inclusion of new general secretaries in the party and new parliamentary board members, SP will try to bring back old socialists.

On whether the party will try to woo Raj Babbar, who is now a Congress MP, Singh refused to comment but added that Babbar has always been a socialist and an old colleague.

Asked to comment on Amar Singh's opinion of trifurcating UP including creation of a separate state of Purvanchal, he made it clear that the SP chief is opposed to any such move.

On why SP supported Congress on the nuclear deal, he said, "We never supported Congress but a coalition which was led by the Congress party which had its own common minimum programme. We supported the UPA on the issue to prevent the government from falling."

Asked whether he had spoken to Amar Singh today on the occasion of his birthday, Mulayam Singh Yadav said, "I had phoned him in the morning and wished him." 

Meanwhile, Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav on Wednesday accepted actor-politician Sanjay Dutt's resignation as party general secretary.

Dutt, who had been brought into the Samajwadi fold in January 2009 by Amar Singh, had quit as SP general secretary earlier this month following Singh's resignation from key party posts.

Last week, when Dutt was asked about his future course of action, he had replied that he would remain with his "elder brother" Amar Singh.

Announcing the nomination of Mohan Singh, Vishambhar Prasad Nishad and Ramasare Kushwaha as the party's new general secretaries, senior leader Ram Gopal Yadav told reporters here that Dutt's resignation had been accepted by party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav.

The three new general secretaries have replaced Amar Singh, Dutt and Obaidullah Azmi (who had also resigned earlier this month showing solidarity with Singh). PTI