The state president of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Keshav Prasad Maurya, on Friday led a direct attack on Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi and accused him of targeting only the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his recent rallies in UP. Maurya was in Ghaziabad on Friday to address party workers.
Gandhi is presently holding rallies and meetings in UP ahead of the state assembly elections scheduled for 2017.
“Over the years, Congress has been reduced to a ‘vote katwa’ (vote cutting) party. There is a ‘Khat’ (cot) panchayat going on in UP. No one is coming to listen to Rahul Gandhi ji but to take khats. In his meetings and rallies, Rahulji is speaking only against the Prime Minister and the BJP. Why is he silent over the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP)? Does this mean that Congress has an alliance with SP...?” Maurya said.
Gandhi had recently launched his Deoria-to-Delhi Kisan Yatra to reach out to voters in UP. However, during his recent visit to Deoria, villagers were seen making away with cots after the meeting.
Maurya also attacked the SP and BSP over UP cabinet minister Mohammed Azam Khan’s recent remarks during a visit to Ghaziabad on September 5. The BJP claims that the person described in Khan’s speech was Dr Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar.
“The UP chief minister is against the interest of farmers, youth and unemployed. He did not utter a word against Azam Khan after he made the remarks in his presence during the inauguration of the Haj House. Behanji (BSP chief Mayawati) is also silent over Khan’s remarks directed towards Bharat Ratna Dr Ambedkar,” he added.
Maurya also said that the BJP will do everything possible to lodge an FIR against Khan and try to get him removed from his post. He said the BJP has already forwarded a memorandum against Khan to the UP governor.
Maurya also took a dig at the state cabinet’s clearance to the scheme for free distribution of smartphones on Thursday. He said the SP fears its downfall in the coming elections.
“The party (SP) is just trying to woo voters by every means possible. If they are so inclined to distribute smartphones, they should start registrations immediately and distribute the phones in 2016 as well. Why do they want to distribute the phones after elections?” he added.
However, Maurya was short of answers when asked about Thursday’s incident when BJP supporters were found carrying Rs. 3 crore in cash from Delhi to Lucknow. Their car was stopped by Ghaziabad traffic police on national highway (NH) 24, and released hours later when BJP leaders arrived with requisite documents.