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Tuesday, Oct 22, 2019

Meet Dalit BSNL employee likely to host lunch for BJP chief Amit Shah in Doon

dehradun Updated: Sep 11, 2017 20:45 IST
Nihi Sharma
Nihi Sharma
Hindustan Times
Moti Ram, a BSNL employee and BJP volunteer, is likely to host lunch for BJP president Amit Shah.
Moti Ram, a BSNL employee and BJP volunteer, is likely to host lunch for BJP president Amit Shah. (Vinay Santosh Kumar/HT Photo)

Moti Ram, 53, is associated with the BJP as a volunteer for the past two decades. His house being just 20 metre away from the party office on Balbir Road, he has in the past played host to many local leaders including Dehradun mayor Vinod Chamoli and MLA Doiwala Umesh Sharma ‘Kau’, but here is an opportunity for him to serve a person, he says will give him special pleasure.

Ram, a Dalit, is likely to host a lunch for BJP national president Amit Shah, who will come to Dehradun on a two-day visit on September 19.

“I don’t think the party has finalised any name yet, but if it’s me, then there could be no better pleasure than to serve a meal to our national president,” Moti Ram told Hindustan Times.

Shah will have meal with a Dalit family as a part of his Dalit outreach programme. Earlier, he had meals with Dalit families in Rajasthan, Haryana, UP and other states. The saffron party won 57 of the 70 seats in the last assembly elections in Uttarakhand and Dalits, considered to be the traditional voters of Congress, believed to have voted for the BJP in the elections.

Ram, who works with the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited, does not hesitate in expressing his political inclination. “I am a volunteer and my political inclination should not worry anyone as it’s my personal choice,” he said.

MLA Rajpur Khazan Das, who won from a reserve seat during the last assembly elections, is incharge for shortlisting a Dalit family to host a lunch for Shah. He said, “As his (Shah) schedule will be tight, we will choose a family (for hosting the lunch) that stays close to the BJP office, so that no time is wasted on travelling.”

Ram’s five-member family, including two daughters and a son, is obviously thrilled. His wife, Poonam Devi, 48, who is also an active BJP member, said, “It would be a dream come true situation, if we serve a meal to him (Shah).”

The family lives in a habitation that has open drains and broken roads. Right now, construction work is going on at the residence of Moti Ram, who aims to complete the work within two days. While there are strict orders that the meal hosted would be ”ghar ka khana” with no fancy dishes, Poonam has some bright ideas to satisfy the taste buds of Shah. “Party leaders say that he will eat simple home-cooked food. It’s not final yet that he will come here, but I have plans to cook two types of vegetables; one will be ‘matar paneer’ and other could be ‘aloo gobhi’, besides dal-rice. I will also cook kheer for him,” she said.

First Published: Sep 11, 2017 20:45 IST

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