Be responsible or quit government: Azam Khan told

Agra, Sep 12 (IANS) Chinks in Uttar Pradesh's ruling Samajwadi Party surfaced Thursday as senior leaders sought action against senior colleague Mohammed Azam Khan for boycotting the national executive meet here.

Lashing out at the frequent barbs of Khan, general secretary Ram Gopal Yadav said Khan was better advised to understand the 'garima' (responsibility) of his position or quit.

Ram Gopal Yadav, known for his overpowering influence on Mulayam Singh, said no one was bigger than the party.

"People vote for Mulayam Singh and not for anyone. It is irrelevant for us if people do not come for important meetings," he added, and underlined that the party was not open to any form of 'hanak' (muscle flexing).

Another party general secretary, Naresh Agarwal, also came down heavily on Khan and said he should not be swayed by sentiments and must not breach party discipline.

A Samajwadi Party legislator from Maharashtra, Abu Azmi, had earlier said that Khan was not a "big leader" of the Muslim community.

Khan, who enjoys the number two position in the Akhilesh Yadav government, has been at cross purposes vis-a-vis the state government and has embarrassed his party on several occasions.

While he has issued statements against the functioning of some government departments, a few days back he accused a senior IAS officer of being "anti-Muslim".

He has kept away from important cabinet meetings, three times consecutively.


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