Sibghatullah Ansari, former Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) MLA and brother of gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari, joined Samajwadi Party (SP) along with his supporters on Saturday, ahead of the assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh slated for early next year.
Former leader Ambika Chaudhary who had quit the SP to join the BSP also returned to the Samajwadi Party along with his supporters.
Welcoming the leaders to the party, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav expressed confidence that they would give further strength to the party and also send a message among the people that it will form government in the state after the polls.
Attacking the ruling BJP, Yadav alleged that the youth did not get jobs and traders were ruined under its government.
He also alleged that the BJP government left the poor helpless during the coronavirus crisis when they needed its support the most.
“I am happy that the people of Uttar Pradesh want change and are eager to walk on the path of development and prosperity,” Yadav said.
In a tweet earlier, Yadav announced that his Samajwadi Party will organise ‘Khiladi Ghera’ demonstrations across the state on the occasion of National Sports Day on Sunday.
He appealed to sportspersons to join the protests and “shake the foundation of irresponsible power”.
Ambika Chaudhary, who had served as minister in the governments led by Mulayam Singh Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav, had quit the SP in 2016.
He had unsuccessfully contested the 2017 assembly election on a BSP ticket.
In the recent zila panchayat chairperson election, the Samajwadi Party fielded his son as its candidate.
After the election of his son to the post of zila panchayat chairman, there were indications that Ambika Chaudhary would return to the SP.
Ambika Chaudhary became emotional and cried as he was welcomed to the SP by Akhilesh Yadav.
Sibghatullah Ansari had won the 2007 assembly election from Mohammadabad constituency of Ghazipur district on a Samajwadi Party ticket and again contested and won from the seat in 2012 on a ticket of his brothers’ party Quami Ekta Dal.
In 2017, he joined the BSP and unsuccessfully contested the election.
Asked if his brother Afzal Ansari who is the BSP MP from Ghazipur would also join the SP, Sibghatullah Ansari said it was for his brother to decide.
(With PTI Inputs)