Mulayam gets a temple, his party a chalisa

The temple could be ready by the time the Samajwadi Party completes a year in office in March 2013.

It was on November 22, Yadav’s 74th birthday, that the foundation was laid for a temple for the party’s ‘supreme deity’. The temple is being constructed by party secretary Rajesh Saini at Nagla Mali in Aligarh district.

Saini says the money for the temple was collected through donations from the public. The land was offered gratis by the villagers.

“There is a movement to construct a bhavya (grand) temple of Netaji,” Saini said, referring to Yadav’s sobriquet.

The estimated cost of the temple is Rs 11 lakh. It will house a life-size statue of Yadav.

A ‘Samajwadi Chalisa’ is being written by Kamta Prasad Keshri, a practitioner of homeopathic medicine who claims to be enamoured by “Netaji’s style of functioning”.

Some Samajwadi Party workers feel they have a right to “sing paeans to their party leaders”.

The Chalisa, comprising 40 verses and modelled on Hanuman Chalisa, was recently printed and distributed in Mirzapur and at party office November 22, coinciding with Yadav’s birthday.

CM Akhilesh Yadav, however, said, “If such a temple is being built, even by an individual, the party is opposed to it.”

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