The SP dissensions



The Samajwadi Party is now in the grip of a feud between father and son, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav, Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. The stink of such a feud is reminiscent of Mughal times. The link between the legislature and the executive is weakened by the miasma of feudalism. The main problem is that the SP has no internal democracy. There is a sad lack of clear decision making mechanisms and all decisions are arbitrary. Add to that rule through remote control. Overarching all is a personality cult characteristic of dictatorship. The patriarch holds sway sweeping away considerations of merit. The SP is splitting like the DMK. These parties are in reality oligarchic, even despotic. Transfer of power in these organizations turns into a struggle for succession.

Internal democratic functioning necessitates genuine election of leaders. That should do away with the system of patronage. Merit should be the chief criterion which enables a party to fulfill people’s aspirations. Reservation in jobs and education and outside influence cause growing agitation in such a state. Legitimacy is a word which does not exist in the vocabulary of politics in Uttar Pradesh. The party machinery needs to be streamlined. Otherwise a patriarch will humiliate a Chief Minister as in UP and undermine the fundamentals of good governance.