Lucknow: Winning a record mandate on the promise of providing strong law and order and ending corruption, the young Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Akhilesh Yadav completes one year in office on Friday.

Akhilesh’s tenure in office has not been smooth sailing. Coming at the helm with a strong message to unruly elements that his Samajwadi Party would no longer tolerate the style synonymous with it till now, the Chief Minister’s continued attempts to stay clear of that image hasn’t proved very successful. 

Law and order still a challenge

With incidents of SP workers, leaders and supporters taking law in their hands at regular intervals, Akhilesh Yadav has often been in the eye of political storm ever since he was sworn in as UP Chief Minister.

Akhilesh’s Report Card
HITS MISSES        
Distribution of free Laptops Cabinet Minister Raja Bhaiya accused of conspiring to kill Kunda DSP Zia-ul Haq
Loan waiver for farmers and free irrigation Allahabad Satmpede claims 38 lives
Distribution of unemployment allowance Communal clashes in Bareilly
Distribution of Kanya Vidya Dhan SP Minister Vinod Singh accused of abducting Gonda CMO

Be it firing by MLAs' supporters during victory processions, a minister running on horseback at a railway platform, another minister being accused of abducting a CMO or a leader enjoying minister's rank being accused of helping animal smugglers and more recently a controversial minister being named in the murder of a police officer, Yadav has been forced to bear barbs in his first year in office.
    
About a dozen communal clashes also took place during this period.

More misses than hits

Even though the SP government made headway in fulfilling poll promises like distribution of unemployment allowance, laptops, 'kanya vidyadhan', loan waiver of farmers and free irrigation, but the modalities and conditions worked out for these schemes later provided scope to detractors to question its intentions.

Even as the power scenario remained grim and no major investment came through, the government drew solace in the interest shown by investors in meetings and the encouraging response of the World Bank.

The massive arrangements at the Maha Kumbh could have been a feather in the cap of the Yadav government, as these were completed in record time, but the tragic stampede at the Allahabad railway station put the government in dock.

Departments like medical health and family welfare, PWD and irrigation, which were facing scams like NRHM, construction of parks and memorials in the previous Mayawati government, worked towards overcoming these controversies and setting their priorities right.
    
Samajwadi Party spokesman and minister for jails Rajendra Chaudhry said there had been qualitative improvement in the state and corruption reined in. To the charges that there are more than one power centres in the present government, Chaudhary said it was a totally wrong notion.
    

Opposition counts SP’s failure

Leader of Opposition Swami Prasad Maurya said the government had failed on all fronts, especially on the law and order situation prevalent in the state.
    
"The government has shown promptness in reversing the good decisions of the previous Mayawati government but when it came to improving the situation in any of the spheres they have failed miserably," he said.
    
BJP spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathak accused Akhilesh government of following Mayawati regime and cited the continuation of the previous excise policy.
    
"There is a long list of tainted faces in the Samajwadi Party from which it has not been able to get rid of," Pathak alleged, adding that from the swearing-in ceremony itself last year, the unruly behaviour of SP workers had been on display.
    
UPCC president Nirmal Khatri said the government faced more losses than gains in the first year. On the front of industrial development and agriculture, ASSOCHAM general secretary D S Rawat said though this government showed an inclination to perform better, but expectations were not fulfilled.
    
Rawat, however, said the availability of the Chief Minister, ministers and officials in the present regime has become much easier. He termed law and order as the biggest hurdle in giving momentum to the state's economic development.

(JPN/Agencies)

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