Mulayam, Akhilesh Yadav to campaign in state

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Samajwadi party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav and Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav will campaign in Gujarat during the forthcoming elections.

Samajwadi Party leader in charge of Gujarat, Ramlal Suman, on Thursday declared a list of 53 candidates for the December 2012 elections. Suman said that of the 53, 19 candidates were from the minority community who would contest on the Samajwadi party symbol.

“All eyes are on the state and SP will not support any party irrespective of its political coalition at the centre. We will go alone and party leaders will be visiting state for the campaign. SP will contest all 182 seats in the state,” said Suman.

He said SP’s main talking points during the Gujarat elections will be the achievements of the SP government in UP and the able leadership of Akhilesh. The SP has a membership of 40,000 in the state.

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Notebooks with pictures of Mulayam, Akhilesh distributed in village schools

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Almost three months before the state assembly polls, school students in rural Surat got a surprise political gift on Tuesday. They were handed over notebooks with photographs of Samajwadi Party (SP) leaders Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son Akhilesh Yadav. The cover of the notebooks also had an image of SP’s election symbol.

The notebooks were given to students of 50 primary and higher secondary schools by Paresh Boghani, a SP leader who claims to be the candidate from the Kamrej assembly constituency. His own photograph also accompanies those of Mulayam and Akhilesh. He went from one school to the other along with his supporters to distribute the notebooks. Each student was given two notebooks, a pencil, an eraser and a sharpener.

He plans to distribute notebooks to around 50,000 students of various schools in Kamrej taluka over the next few days. The 125 schools chosen for the purpose are government or aided schools. “I went to some government funded schools and found that the students don’t get basic facilities. So I decided to give them the kit. Majority of the beneficiaries are tribal students,” said Boghani, who is a businessman.

He said, “There is nothing wrong in it. I am spending the money for the kit and I have a right to choose the cover.” SP’s Gujarat unit president, Surendra Singh Yadav was also present at the distribution.

“Notebook distribution is a political move keeping elections in mind. The political parties are now targeting school students but it will not benefit them,” said Ashwin Patel, a BJP leader and president of Surat Zilla Panchayat.