Lok Sabha Elections 2019: Ghazipur village of slain CRPF jawan divided on caste lines
Manoj Sinha is the BJP candidate from the Ghazipur Lok Sabha seat while the BSP has fielded Afzal Ansari and the Congress has named Ajit Prasad Kushwaha as its nominee.Updated: May 14, 2019 14:43 IST
Caste factor matters in this Yadav-dominated native village of slain Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel Shyam Narayan Yadav, 51, who succumbed to the injuries he suffered in an encounter with terrorists in Kupwara early in March.
While the Yadav community supports the SP-BSP alliance, upper caste voters, particularly Brahmins and Kayasthas, are rallying behind the BJP .
“This area is a stronghold of the Samajwadi Party. People here have been supporting the party since its inception. SP patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav and party president Akhilesh Yadav are our own. We can’t overlook them,” says Chandralok Yadav, a student of Delhi University who is in his native Hasanpura-Fattepur village of Ghazipur district these days.
“The community always feel connected with Akhilesh and Netaji (as the SP patriarch is referred to by his partymen). The village has a population of around 4,000, with Yadavs in majority, besides Dalit, Rajbhar, Muslims, Brahmins and Kayasthas,” he adds.
Ramgati Yadav, the elder brother of slain CRPF jawan, says although sitting Ghazipur MP and Union minister of state Manoj Sinha paid attention towards the development of the district but he can’t overlook SP chief Akhilesh.
He, however, complains that the SP chief didn’t visit his house after his younger brother died in the line of duty in Jammu and Kashmir.
“Akhilesh ji is our own. He should have visited my house to pay tribute to my brother. Anyway, we will continue supporting him,” he says.
Yadav also wants the government to provide a government job his late brother’s son Praveen as early as possible.
“Sinha (union minister and local MP Manoj Sinha) wrote to the chief minister for the same recently,” he says.
He also praises district magistrate K Balaji for extending full support to the family.
Urmila, the widow of the slain CRPF personnel, also says that her son should be given a government job after her husband sacrificed his life for the country.
Supporting her demand, a local youth Anoop Srivastava starts talking about his liking for PM Modi. Another local Ramayan Sharma, a retired government employee, also supports the PM. “The Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party have joined hands to defeat Modi. My point is if the alliance wins maximum seat, will it be able to form a government at the Centre? A strong government is needed at the Centre and public knows who can give a strong government,” Sharma asserts.
Sharma, however, adds that the SP-BSP alliance has an edge over the BJP in this constituency.
Other locals like Abbas Ali, Vakeel Yadav and Sukhram Sukkhu also support the alliance.
Srivastava observes that Modi tried to put things in right direction during last five years. Roads are being constructed. Ghazipur has seen considerable development.
As MP, Manoj Sinha left no stone unturned in modernising the railway stations in the district. He also brought a perishable cargo centre here.
“But this is a fact that caste factor matters in this constituency. Sit at any roadside tea stalls and listen to locals engaged in poll chats and you will realise it,” Srivastava claims.
Manoj Sinha is the BJP candidate from the seat while the BSP has fielded Afzal Ansari and the Congress has named Ajit Prasad Kushwaha as its nominee.
First Published: May 14, 2019 14:42 IST