In a move that could lead to political realignments in the coming months, Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav has expressed solidarity with senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who has been given a two-year jail term by a Gujarat court in a criminal defamation case for comments he made in Karnataka during the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
The court also granted him bail and suspended the sentence for 30 days to allow him to appeal in a higher court.
Akhilesh, for the first time, has come out in Rahul's support, saying the BJP was defaming the country, public, harmony and the Constitution alike and cases of defamation were being filed against the opposition parties.
He said the BJP was implicating opposition leaders in minor cases as the party feared the power of the opposition.
"Defamation of the country, public defamation, defamation of harmony, defamation of the constitution, defamation of the economy. Do not know how many types of defamation cases should be filed against the BJP. The BJP, which secures its political future by implicating the opposition in minor cases, is scared of the power of the opposition," he stated.
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So far, Akhilesh has maintained his distance from the Congress and has even ruled out any alliance with the party in future.
His support to Rahul Gandhi at this time indicates the possibility of the entire opposition coming together against the ruling BJP.