It's Now A Rahul v Akhilesh Contest, Thunders Mulayam's Son After Wife's DefeatSamajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav's son Akhilesh has vowed political revenge against Gandhi family scion Rahul Gandhi for his wife Dimple's electoral defeat at the hands of actor Raj Babbar in the Firozabad Lok
Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav's son Akhilesh has vowed political revenge against Gandhi family scion Rahul Gandhi for his wife Dimple's electoral defeat at the hands of actor Raj Babbar in the Firozabad Lok Sabha byelection.
"Till now, the SP-Congress battle was limited to seniors. But it is the first time that Rahul came here, and campaigned against us (my wife). It is the beginning of a Rahul vs Akhilesh contest," the young Yadav declared, according to Times of India.
Mulayam's son is angry over Rahul campaigning against his wife. Says Akhilesh: "Yes, my wife lost, I accept the people's verdict. It happens in politics. … "I congratulate Rahul that he defeated me in our first battle. But we will be face to face in many more battles to come."
The likelihood of post-bypoll politics turning personal was evident the day Rahul landed in Firozabad. Akhilesh led a bicycle rally, with converging crowds bringing the town to a halt.
Till then, the two MPs were known to be "friends" who bonded better than their elders with a history. Post-polls, however, Akhilesh clarified, "We are not friends, we are just political acquaintances. I have seen reports calling us friends, it is not so."
Said Akhilesh: "There will be a struggle, there will be many issues," he said.
While conceding defeat -- SP having drawn a cipher in UP, losing even on home turf Bharthana and Etawah assemblies -- Akhilesh argued that Congress had not covered itself with glory either.
"A young central minister could not get his mother elected on his seat and Congress could not win the constituency vacated by the face of Rahul's Bundelkhand campaign and NREGA. This is also the people's mandate," Akhilesh pointed out.
The Kannauj MP did not shy from telling that the Firozabad bypoll had transferred hostilities between SP and Congress elders to the GenNext.
The comment from Akhilesh Yadav marks a new GenNext rivalry, possibly more volatile than others because their paths are likely to cross often now that Rahul has flagged UP as his top priority and Akhilesh is tasked with consolidating his father's flagging political legacy.
Akhilesh may be smarting over Rahul seeking votes against his wife, a violation of an unspoken heartland rule of bigwigs skirting around each other's electoral turf which the SP may feel has been disregarded.