Mehar murder is poll plank in UP | india | Hindustan Times
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Mehar murder is poll plank in UP

After Ekta Kapoor, it is now the Congress' turn to take the "saas-bahu" episode to every household, this time in the badlands of Uttar Pradesh.

india Updated: Apr 01, 2006 04:45 IST
Saroj Nagi

After Ekta Kapoor, it is now the Congress' turn to take the "saas-bahu" episode to every household, this time in the badlands of Uttar Pradesh.

Scripted by AICC general secretary Ashok Gehlot, the Congress has found a face to its allegation that law and order has completely collapsed in Mulayam Singh Yadav's state: Mehar Bhargava who died after being fatally wounded while protecting her daughter-in-law from anti-social elements, at a local shopping mall.

While identifying the growing atrocities against women in UP as its latest mantra to create a niche for itself in the state — by wooing the vast women constituency — the Congress has sought to build on what its chief Sonia Gandhi has been repeatedly saying: the SP, like many other Opposition parties, has been targeting her just as they did her mother-in-law Indira Gandhi and her husband Rajiv Gandhi.

After holding a day-long dharna on the Mehar Bhargava issue in Lucknow, the AICC has now directed its district units to hold similar agitations across the state on April 3. Thereafter, it would be the turn of the block committees, so that by the month end, every household gets the message — that no woman, be it saas or bahu, behen or beti, is safe in the SP-ruled state where criminals reportedly have a free run.

AICC leaders believe it is a touchy issue, which people across the caste divide can identify with. More so, since almost every village in the caste-ridden society would have, at some point of time, been a witness to similar tragedies. It isn't that the Congress hasn't identified other failures of the Mulayam regime. In fact, there is a ready list, including farmers' problems, shortage of power and lack of infrastructure and development. But, as a leader said, the emphasis is on identifying one main issue that seems to touch a raw nerve. Once that is done, other issues would automatically be added so that an overall atmosphere builds up against the regime.

If the agitation touches a chord with the people, the Congress would get the opportunity to revive itself in the state, which is due for polls in February 2007.