Launching the BJP’s Lok Sabha election campaign in Uttar Pradesh, the party’s prime ministerial candidate LK Advani refrained from attacking the BSP while training his guns at the Congress on issues ranging from the nuclear deal to inflation.
This left many BJP leaders and workers, who braved heavy rains to attend the rally, thinking that the party is keeping its options open as the Congress is warming up to the Samajwadi Party in the face of stiff resistance on the nuclear deal from the Left parties.
Advani suggested that the BJP had an “important role” in helping the BSP return to power in Uttar Pradesh by its sustained campaign against the SP.
Significantly, Advani seemed to back Mayawati’s charge that the UPA government has been discriminating against Uttar Pradesh. She cited this as one of the BSP’s primary reasons for withdrawing support to the UPA government last week. Advani said if his party comes to power at the Centre, it would treat the state “without prejudice”.
Without naming the Samajwadi Party, Advani said, “One of the two major parties” in the state was “engaged in efforts to save the UPA government at the Centre”.
Advani said, “If the people voted for one party (BSP) because they perceived that particular party to be the front-runner capable of delivering liberation from the previous government, people should apply the same logic to back the BJP in the Lok Sabha polls.”
Continuing his moderate stance on the contentious Ram Temple at Ayodhya, Advani said, “Just as the BJP is committed to build the Ram mandir, we are dedicated to a rashtra mandir dedicated to Mother India in which all her children live a life of prosperity, peace, justice and brotherhood.”