Lucknow, October 12: The Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh has allotted the government bungalow vacated by Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati after a Supreme Court directive to Samajwadi Secular Morcha founder Shivpal Yadav.
"I have been allotted the bungalow as there were intelligence reports of threats to me,” said Shivpal Yadav, who is Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav's brother and the estranged uncle of party president Akhilesh Yadav. Is Shivpal Yadav BJP's Weapon Against Akhilesh Yadav-Mayawati Combine?
“I am a five-time legislator and it has been allotted to me as a senior member of the state assembly," he said. Yadav said he had applied for a government bungalow, and the one at 6, Lal Bahadur Shastri Marg was allotted to him “following all rules and regulations".
The Congress suggested favouritism in the allocation, saying Yadav was working for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. Shivpal Yadav has, however, ruled out any tie-up with the BJP.
A close confidant of the MLA said he might run the Samajwadi Secular Morcha from the bungalow now allotted to him. While launching the morcha in August, Shivpal Yadav had said he felt neglected in the SP after Akhilesh Yadav took charge of the party.
Yadav has not quit the SP even after forming the morcha, which he says will contest the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Uttar Pradesh State government officials did not comment on the bungalow allocation. But the state BJP spokesman Shalabh Mani Tripathi defended the decision, saying "no politics should be seen in it”.
“He is a very senior leader, a former minister and a legislator. His seniority must have been taken into account for the allotment of this bungalow by the government," he added. When contacted, UP Congress spokesperson Rajiv Bakshi claimed Shivpal Yadav formed his morcha under pressure from the BJP.
"The allotment of a prime bungalow to Shivpal shows that BJP is helping him. Shivpal is working for the BJP," he said.
Mayawati vacated the bungalow after the Supreme Court struck down on May 7 an amendment to the Uttar Pradesh Ministers (Salaries, Allowances and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act that allowed former chief ministers to retain their government accommodation when their term ended.
After this, former CM's including Mayawati, Mulayam Singh Yadav, Akhilesh Yadav, Narain Dutt Tiwari, and Rajnath Singh had to vacate their bungalows in the state capital.