SP loses senior leader Ambika Chaudhary to BSP

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Senior Samajwadi leader and former Uttar Pradesh minister Ambika Chaudhary quit the party on Saturday to join the Bahujan Samaj party ahead of the polls. The 2017 assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh are turning out to be tumultuous for the Samajwadi Party. Just out of a dirty identity battle, the SP is yet to get back on its feet to kick-start the campaign for the assembly polls. Even before the party can start off its elections-related activities, Chaudhary, a loyalist of party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, announced his separation from the party.

Senior SP leader Ambika Chaudhary.

"Akhilesh's behaviour towards Mulayam Singh Yadav is shameful. I will now be dedicating myself to the BSP," he said on Saturday.

The downfall of the senior leader started in a cabinet reshuffle in 2013, when revenue, relief and rehabilitation and Uttar Pradesh public service management portfolios were taken away from him and given to Shivpal Singh Yadav. He was later given the backward welfare department and eventually dropped from the cabinet. The 56-year-old leader is expected to contest from the Balia constituency but this on a BSP ticket.

Soon after the SP feud broke out, he was quick to align himself to the Mulayam camp and stood firmly by the patriarch. After the Election Commission held Akhilesh's SP as the real SP, Mulayam had given the Uttar Pradesh chief minister a list of 38 candidates of his choice. The list included Chaudhary alongside Om Prakash Singh, Narad Rai and Shadaab Fatima.

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