Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Friday suggested that an alliance with Congress is possible in an arrangement where Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav is the Prime Minister and Rahul Gandhi his Deputy. Akhilesh made the comments in the course of a conversation at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit in Delhi in the presence of the Congress vice president. However, Rahul refused to comment when asked to respond.
The UP Chief Minister was replying to a question on whether he was ready to extend his "good" personal relationship with Gandhi to a political level with the Congress.
"You are asking me because I am a Samajwadi (socialist) and you also say that I get rebuked by my father (Mulayam). I also want that Netaji's dreams are fulfilled and that I work for him. He becomes the Prime Minister and he (pointing at Rahul) Deputy Prime Minister. I am in agreement with this and will make an alliance now," if it is found acceptable, Akhilesh said, smiling.
He, however, sidestepped a question on whether an alliance with its rival BSP, like the one in Bihar where JD(U) and RJD came together, is possible in UP for the 2017 Assembly polls. "Her (Mayawati) choice is that stone made elephant statues come up. So how is that possible? I have already told you my formula," was Akhilesh's response, referring to his conditions for a possible alliance with Congress.
Earlier, he categorically said, "there is no talk of any coalition at this point. It's better if we don't talk of it now." The 42-year-old chief minister of India's most populous state asserted that any relationship with the BJP or any of its associate organisations was not possible "because of the kind of divisions they produce and the language they use."