Lucknow: Welcoming 4.5 percent quota within 27 percent reservation for OBCs, Union Minister for Steel Beni Prasad Verma on Friday said this decision has made Samajwadi Party and its President Mulayam Singh Yadav "irrelevant".

This decision would make "Sapa saaf, Maya half and Congress top" (remove SP, cut Mayawati to half and put Congress on the top) and SP and its president would now be irrelevant, Verma who had been a close confidante of Yadav in the past told reporters on the sidelines of a function here.

"Granting separate quota to Muslims is a praiseworthy step of the central government," he said.

Asserting that Anna Hazare would have no impact in Uttar Pradesh he went on to add that "he is four-feet high while I am six-feet".

Targeting the ruling BSP and Samajwadi Party, Verma said that both have just filled their pockets. "Unemployment has increased and these both leaders are criminals in the eyes of youth who have pinned their hopes on Rahul Gandhi," he said.

Praising the leadership quality of Gandhi, he claimed that in the coming Vidhan Sabha elections Congress on its own would win more that 200 seats and form a majority government while BSP would get 100, Samajwadi Party 50 and BJP 30.

To questions on his claim to Chief Minister's post, he said "I am a worker of the Congress".

Criticising the BSP government of the state, he said that corruption was rampant alround. "Central Minister for Environment Jayanthi Natrajan has recently questioned Chief Minister Mayawati on the spending of Rs 350 crore meant for cleaning of rivers," he said demanding a CBI inquiry on it.

When questioned about his long association with Mulayam Singh Yadav, Beni said he was with socialist leader Ram Manohar Lohia, Chaudhary Charan Singh and not with Yadav.

Stressing that he was not expelled from Samajwadi Party but had quit it, he said "when I was young, my leader was aged Chaudhary Charan Singh and today when I am old, my leader is young Rahul Gandhi".

(Agencies)