On hoardings, UP MLA’s son and supporters declare him a minister
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While Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav is yet to expand his ministry, hoardings have been put up in Rae Bareli hailing Bachhrawan MLA Ram Lal Akela's elevation as "minister of state".
The hoardings came up after the Samajwadi Party MLA was appointed chairman of the Assembly committee for SC, ST and notified tribes on August 9. This appointment is also mentioned in the hoardings, but in smaller letters. The post is not equivalent to minister of state.
"A red-beacon car was provided to me in Lucknow so I thought I am now a minister," said Akela.
An Assembly official confirmed that committee chairmen are not entitled to the status and perks of a minister. "We just provide a red-beacon vehicle when the committee holds meetings," he said.
At least one hoarding has been sponsored by Akela's son, Vikrant, who is district president of the Lohia Vahini — one of the SP's frontal organisations.
Another hoarding has been put up by Sai Graphics. "I was asked by Vikrant to make these hoardings. He asked me to put up one also, I have to obey his order," said Manoj Kumar, its owner.
Akela said he had not asked anyone to put up the hoardings. "My workers are poor... they just got excited. I will ask them to pull down the hoardings. I didn't say anything so far because they were so happy," he said.
The hoardings carry Akela's photograph, along with the photographs of the Chief Minister, SP president Mulayam Singh Yadav and senior party leader Azam Khan.
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