Steel Minister and Kurmi leader Beni Prasad Verma, who was in the news with his vitriolic remarks against the Samajwadi Party and its chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, today signalled that he had declared a “ceasefire”. Verma and Yadav’s war of words had led to much bad blood with Yadav demanding Verma’s resignation as Cabinet minister.
After a heated exchange of words between both sides with much name calling thrown in, matters seem to have piped down. Verma today met AICC Media incharge Janardhan Dwivedi and party treasurer and senior leader Motilal Vora. Emerging from these meetings he told reporters today, “Ceasefire.”
According to Congress party sources, Verma has not been chided for his comments but “he has been advised to quieten down.” After all, Verma’s remarks against the Yadav supremo keep the party relevant in Uttar Pradesh, where we still have to fight the SP and face the polls.
Verma had first alleged that Mulayam Singh Yadav had “link with terrorists” subsequently highlighting what he called his proximity to the BJP. Yadav then in turn called him an “opium smuggler”.
The two UP leaders are long time friends turned foes who had founded the Samajwadi Party together. They have been sworn to enmity ever since their bitter fallout.
The Samajwadi Party camp has also decided to tone down the rhetoric with a senior leader telling Business Standard, “We have decided to ignore Beni Prasad. After all, why should we talk about him and give him more importance than he deserves. We have told all our party workers this. It is more pertinent to comment on the Congress or on Rahul Gandhi or Sonia Gandhi.”
The SP chief today targeted the Congress in Lucknow and said, “It's not easy to fight with the government. It has thousands of hand and can use CBI and put one in jail.” Earlier too Yadav had attacked the Congress-led UPA government blaming it for misusing the CBI . “Congress used to take support by threatening. I supported the UPA government in bad times but Congress has put CBI after me,” Yadav had said.