'We will not allow UP's division at any cost'
Coming down heavily on the Mayawati government, the Congress on Monday termed as "ridiculous" the controversial resolution passed by the Uttar Pradesh Assembly for splitting the state into four parts.
All India Congress Committee spokesperson Manish Tiwari said, "If some people think that the people of Uttar Pradesh are foolish and they cannot see through this proposal inspired by political opportunism, they will get an appropriate reply (in the elections)."
He refused to give a categorical reply on whether the party was in favour of the proposal or not.
AICC screening committee in-charge for the state, Mohan Prakash, described the passing of the resolution without a discussion as "murder of democracy" and attacked the Samajwadi Party and the Bharatiya Janata Party as well over the issue.
Image: A map of Uttar Pradesh
'Nothing can be more ridiculous'
"The role played by the BJP, BSP and SP on such an important issue reflects their real seriousness towards it," Prakash said sarcastically, adding, "A joke is being made out of the democratic system in this manner. Such a significant proposal was passed in this light manner."
Tiwari wondered why there was no discussion in the assembly over the proposal to divide a state like UP, which is the "heart" of India. "Nothing can be more ridiculous than this," he said.
To a question on whether the Congress is opposed to the proposal to divide the state, he merely said that the party takes decision on such issues after thorough deliberations.
"Whenever such decisions are taken, an effort is made to build a consensus. The way the Uttar Pradesh government got this resolution passed is not a good precedent for any state," he said.
Image: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati
'We will not allow the division to take place'
Dubbing the resolution passed by the UP assembly to divide the state into four parts as a "diversionary tactic", SP said it would ask the Centre to direct the governor to quash the proceedings of the House.
"We will not allow the division to take place at any cost. Since the assembly proceedings did not take place, the resolution is unconstitutional. We will demand the Centre to direct governor (B L Joshi) to quash the proceedings of the legislative assembly," SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav told reporters.
Yadav said even Chief Minister Mayawati has admitted that the proceedings of the House could not take place following protests by the opposition.
He said SP workers will "hit the streets" to protest the resolution and the party will talk to other political parties in Parliament to oppose the move of the BSP government.
"We will talk to all parties to explain to them that the division of Uttar Pradesh is against the people," Yadav said when asked whether he will talk to the Congress, BJP and Rashtriya Lok Dal on the issue during the winter session of Parliament.
Yadav, a former chief minister of UP, said the resolution was an effort by Mayawati to divert the attention of the people from the issue of corruption.
Image: Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav
'The ball is in the Centre's court'
But expelled SP leader Amar Singh today came out in support of the BSP government on the resolution.
In an apparent dig at the Samajwadi Party, he said even socialist leader Ram Manohar Lohia was a supporter of smaller states.
"Even Ram Manohar Lohia favoured smaller states. Now the ball is in the Centre's court and it should do the needful," Singh said.
To a poser on whether the resolution was a political move, Singh, who now heads the Lokmanch Party, said till the time it serve the interests of the common man, it did not matter whether it was a political move.
"Even the package for weavers can be termed as a political move ahead of UP assembly elections. But till the time the people benefit, how does it matter," he said.
He said the creation of Awadh Pradesh, Poorvanchal, Paschim Pradesh and Bundelkhand will help the locals come out of their difficulties, including poor infrastructure, unemployment and power crisis.
Image: Lokmanch Party chief Amar Singh