Paying homage to the revolutionaries at Kakori martyrs’ memorial on Saturday, BJP president Amit Shah gave a call for ‘parivartan’ (change) in Uttar Pradesh where assembly elections are scheduled next year.
Blending patriotism with politics, Shah sought the blessings of the largely OBC-Dalit audience to help in the formation of a majority BJP government in UP. The caste group accounts for more than half of the voters in the state.
The leaders who spoke before Shah were party MP Kaushal Kishore, a Dalit, and state BJP chief Keshav Prasad Maurya, an OBC. Keeping with the BJP’s UP plan, the two leaders targeted the SP and the BSP for neglecting the poor, especially the Dalits and the backwards.
Before leaving for lunch at the residence of Dalit MP Kaushal Kishore, Shah thanked UP for electing 71 BJP MPs in the 2014 Lok Sabha election.
He said the change would remain incomplete without backing the Lok Sabha victory with a similar result in UP polls next year.
“There is so much we want to do but UP government stalls all initiatives of the BJP. From free LPG connection (Ujjwala Yojana) to crop insurance scheme, affordable housing plan for the poor or fair price medicine shops, or be it AIIMS in the state, the Uttar Pradesh government blocks all our moves. Without UP, the country’s development would not be possible,” he said.
“As we celebrate 70 years of our country’s Independence, it is time to reflect on the sacrifices of our freedom fighters. Out of these 70 years, the Congress party has ruled the country for 60 years. It is time to ask why states like UP still do not have power and roads in all villages and why youths are unemployed. Did freedom-fighters lay down their lives for this,” he asked.
After the solitary mention of Congress, Shah went on to concentrate on the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party.
“Do you think either the SP or the BSP can help end crimes like the ones that took place in Bulandshahr or Mathura’s Jawaharbagh? Do you think they can provide ambulances in all UP villages, or employment to youths, or water for irrigation in all the fields, or end ‘gundaraaj’,” he asked his audience who kept replying in the negative.
He appealed to the people to elect a BJP government for development.“While the SP focuses on one caste, ‘Behenji’ is focused on herself,” he said.
Shah said he would seek the PM’s help for developing the martyrs’ memorial in Kakori as a world class tourist site. Interestingly, UP CM Akhilesh Yadav had announced a `5 crore plan to develop Kakori as a tourist site on August 9 – the 74th anniversary of the Quit India Movement.