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Shivpal Yadav vacates official residence as SP rift deepens

It seems that a patch-up is unlikely between the warring factions of the Samajwadi Party as state unit President Shivpal Yadav on Wednesday started vacating his official residence in Lucknow, three days after being booted out as minister for the second time.

Mini trucks were seen parked outside Shivpal's 7, Kalidas Marg, official residence to move the belongings to his house. Shivpal's official residence stands right next to that of his nephew and Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Akhilesh Yadav.

Earlier in the morning, making it clear that he does not want to be taken back in the state government, Shivpal's staff began removing his ministerial name plate from his official residence.

Also today Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav met Governor Ram Naik, in what was later described as a courtesy call.

Shivpal was removed last week from the ministry for the second time in the last one month.

The latest move is being viewed in political circles as Shivpal's snub to attempts by his nephew Akhilesh to broker a deal with party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, in which he had reportedly sought revocation of Ram Gopal Yadav's expulsion from the party in exchange for the re-entry of Shivpal and three others ? Om Prakash Singh, Narad Rai and Shadab Fatima ? into his cabinet.

Mulayam had earlier asked Akhilesh to reinstate the sacked ministers but the Chief Minister refused to yield to the diktat forcing the SP supremo to tell reporters that he had left the matter to Akhilesh.