Lucknow: Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav was stopped at the Lucknow airport by the state police while he was on his way to Prayagraj, said reports. This led to protests by SP workers right outside the airport. (Also read: Posters Projecting Akhilesh as Next PM Seen in Lucknow)
Security has been beefed up as reports suggested that more MLAs are likely to join the protest.
Yadav was scheduled to attend a student union function at the Allahabad University.
Taking to Twitter, Yadav said, “The state government is so scared of me going to the swearing-in ceremony of a student leader that I am being stopped at the Lucknow airport.”
He tweeted, “I was prevented from boarding the airplane without any written orders. Currently detained at Lucknow airport. It is clear how frightened the govt is by the oath ceremony of a student leader. The BJP knows that youth of our great country will not tolerate this injustice anymore!”
Reacting, senior party leader and Yadav’s uncle Ram Gopal Yadav said, “I directly blame the CM. Akhilesh had permission (to visit Prayagraj). It was at the directions of the CM that he was stopped. They didn’t even let him reach Allahabad.”
In his government’s defence, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said, “The SP should refrain from its anarchist activities. Allahabad University requested that Akhilesh Yadav’s visit may create a law and order problem because of the dispute between student organisations. Hence, the government took this step.”
Later, it emerged that the university had written to the SP chief, explaining why he could not attend the event. The University Registrar wrote that politicians were not allowed in its varsity programmes.
In January, the SP and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) announced an alliance for the coming Lok Sabha elections. Uttar Pradesh sends that maximum number of MPs, 80, to Lok Sabha.