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Samajwadi Party MP joins BSP over Kalyan row

Source: PTI
February 15, 2009 00:00 IST
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In yet another jolt to Samajwadi Party ahead of elections, Lok Sabha MP from Moradabad Shafiqur Rehman Burq defected on Saturday to the Bahujan Samaj Party and lashed out at Mulayam Singh Yadav for joining hands with rebel BJP leader Kalyan Singh.
"With the help of Muslims' support Yadav became a national leader and now he is challenging Muslims by coming
nearer to Kalyan Singh, giving ticket to his son Rajvir Singh and wanting to play a Hindu card," Burq alleged.
Burq's desertion adds to the string of losses to Mulayam's party which is facing discontent among its Muslim leaders since Kalyan, who was chief minister when Babri mosque was demolished in 1992, announced that he will campaign for SP and his son joined the party last month.
Burq was also named as BSP candidate from Sambhal Lok Sabha seat in the upcoming elections by BSP leader Munkad Ali. The rebel leader had demanded a ticket from Sambal but the SP had turned him down.
Burq hit out Yadav for his friendship with Kalyan whom he termed as "'qatil' (killer) of babri mosque" and warned that he would have to "pay for it" in the coming Lok Sabha elections.
Apart from Burq, SP MPs Afzal Ansari, Shahid Siddqiue and S P Singh Baghel have also joined BSP.Burq also turned his ire on SP general secretary Amar Singh saying "that it seems that it is not Yadav but Amar Singh who is running the show in the party".
Citing Kalyan's friendship with Mulayam as the only reason for parting ways with the SP, he claimed that other SP
leaders like Salim Sherwani, Shihad Aqlaq and Shahid Ansari also had similar views on Kalyan besides senior leader Azam Khan.
"He (Yadav) became a national leader with the support of 25 per cent Muslims and not Yadavs who are only six per
cent and they laboured hard to help his party gain strength ... and now he has forgotten their contribution in his success
and today the entire community is looking at this new found friendship with hatred and doubt," he said.
Alleging that Yadav has been taking Muslims' support for granted, Burq claimed Mayawati was fully committed to the welfare and uplift of the Muslim community "as a whole and has a concrete programme for the same".
Asked why he did not not raise the issue of Kalyan's friendship when the former BJP leader as president of the Rashtriya Kranti Party (RKP) in 2003 helped the formation of SP government in Uttar Pradesh, Burq said that he had broached on the matter at the party forum.
On the fatwa issued by Deoband seminary against 'Jai Bhim', the slogan of his new party, Burq said that BSP president and Chief Minister Mayawati had already issued a clarification that it was not binding on party workers.
Among those who joined the BSP along with Burq was Afroz Ali, a former Congress MLA from Rampur.
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