Mulayam promised "justice" for the victims of the riots and "strict action" against the guilty, claiming there was "no justice" in Gujarat. Mulayam while seeking to mollify Khan said, "Azam Khan can never be upset with me." READ MORE: SC issues notice to Centre, Uttar Pradesh government (Agencies)
Denying any rift with Khan, a senior minister and the Samajwadi Party's muslim face, Mulayam said Khan can never be "upset" with him.
Triggering speculation of a rift in the SP, Khan skipped the ruling party's two-day national executive meet here after he was reportedly unhappy with his own government's handling of the riots that has claimed the lives of 40 persons.
"There was no justice in Gujarat but justice will be done in UP...I have never done the politics of caste and religion. Strict action will be taken against the guilty. We will provide the maximum possible assistance to them (the riot victims)," Mulayam told reporters at the end of the meet.
Mulayam, who was flanked by senior party leaders including Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, was responding to a question on the remarks of RLD chief Ajit Singh that SP was doing what Modi had done in Gujarat to polarize voters. Singh had earlier said, "If you go back to what Modi has done in Gujarat was basically that he did not act. He stopped police from taking any action and that is what happened in UP."
Rejecting the charge, Mulayam said his party's government will take "such strong action (against the culprits) that they will never dare to repeat it".
He said the state government has taken into custody many people and will arrest all those who are on the run.
The stand taken by Mulayam was in contrast to the party National General Secretary Ramgopal Yadav's remark earlier in the day that either Khan should have attended the meet or resigned. Ramgopal had also said that Khan's absence was not felt at the meet.
The SP supremo said the party knew that why Azam did not attend the meeting. "Ours is a democratic party and not an autocratic one," he said.
Asked about some SP leaders speaking against Khan, Mulayam said that whatever statement needs to be given had been made.
Meanwhile, the SP chief said that his party has fixed a target and will win maximum seats in Uttar Pradesh in the Lok Sabha elections and "candidates will not be changed".
"There will be no change in candidates announced by the party," he said in a reply to a question.
"Directives have been issued to contest Lok Sabha polls seriously and a target of winning maximum seats in UP has been fixed," Mulayam told reporters after valedictory session of the two-day national executive meeting.
He said that the party would appoint election in-charges, who would see how much preparation has been made.
On being asked about extending support to Congress-led UPA government, Mulayam said that SP's support was not to the party.
"Our support is not to Congress, but is based on issues. Some issues come up on which we have to extend support," he said.
He said that efforts would be made that SP was in an important role.
"As of now I leave it on the people, but our efforts will be that SP is in an important role," he said in a reply to a question.
He said that during two-day meeting, political economic resolutions were passed, besides serious deliberations were held on the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections.
Mulayam promised "justice" for the victims of the riots and "strict action" against the guilty, claiming there was "no justice" in Gujarat.
Mulayam while seeking to mollify Khan said, "Azam Khan can never be upset with me."
READ MORE: SC issues notice to Centre, Uttar Pradesh government