New Delhi, Jun 12: Underplaying attacks by Team Anna, SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav today extended support to yoga guru Ramdev in his campaign on the issue of black money, saying till it is brought back, the poor won't benefit.
Ramdev met Yadav at his residence here for over an hour to seek his support on bringing back Indian blackmoney stashed away abroad.
“Ramdev is fighting against black money. It has my full support. We had been against black money and will continue to do so,” Yadav said after the meeting.
Interestingly, BJP veteran Jaswant Singh also reached Yadav's 16, Ashoka Road residence when Ramdev was meeting the former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister. He left Yadav's residence after 10 minutes.
In reply to a poser on Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal dubbing Yadav, along with other politicians, as “corrupt”, he said, “I don't give importance to such people, nor do I take notice (of their statements).”
“Socialists have fought against black money from the time of JP (Jai Prakash Narayan) and (Ram Manohar) Lohia had been against black money. You should read the literature,” Yadav said.
Ramdev also sought to support Yadav by saying that “the talk (on black money) should be on issues, not people.”
During the June 2 day-long joint fast of Ramdev and Anna Hazare here, differences had erupted after Kejriwal named politicians. Ramdev said the protocol decided was that no one would be named.
Yadav said Ramdev's “struggle” will be “successful”. “Till the time black money is not brought back, the poor won't benefit. It also leads to corruption...the war had weakened. But I am happy that Ramdev has relaunched it,” Yadav said.
Ramdev said while he would be meeting Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik tomorrow, he hoped to meet Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa and BSP President Mayawati in the coming days.
Yadav left the media interaction mid-way to attend a “meeting” even as Ramdev attacked the Centre for slapping several ED, income tax and service tax notices on his trust.
He said the trust was contesting the case in a tribunal and, if necessary, would move court against the notices.
Responding to attacks from several Congress leaders, he said he would only react if questions are raised against him by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and party General Secretary Rahul Gandhi.
“These are the leaders who carry weight. I will not respond to attacks by others,” he said.
Asked why was he meeting leaders like Sharad Pawar and Ajit Singh when the central government was targeting him, he said such leaders have become a part of the UPA for a “good cause” and were against such attacks.
“Standard and Poor's has threated to downgrade India's credit rating to speculative grade, but the government has no answer. But when we raise issues of public importance, we are termed as anti-nationals,” he said.
To a question on the charge sheet against Delhi Police personnel on last year's Ramlila ground crackdown, Ramdev said the city police was in the hands of the Ministry of Home Affairs and his legal battle on the issue would continue.