Ready for debate but on growth, jobs, and youth: Akhilesh tells ShahUpdated: Jan 22, 2020 15:35 IST
A day after Union Home Minister Amit Shah challenged Opposition leaders to debate over Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) at a rally here, Samajwadi Party (SP) president and former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav on Wednesday retorted by saying he was ready to debate with the BJP but the issue, he added, would be development.
Talking to media persons after offering tributes to the party icon and socialist Janeshwar Mishra on his 10th death anniversary, he said “Let the BJP decide on the place and the time for the debate and I will reach there.” “But the topic of debate will be development, employment, youth, farmers etc,” he stressed.
Remembering Mishra, he said “Junior Lohia always worked for social equality and the party will continue to follow the path shown by him.”
Akhilesh accused the BJP of digging out divisive issues to divert country’s attention from the real issues.
Shah on Tuesday challenged Akhilesh Yadav, Rahul Gandhi, Mamata Banerjee and other leaders of Opposition parties to debate over the CAA.
Referring to Shah’s remark on the CAA, the former CM said the kind of language being used by the BJP leaders did not behoove of a politician. He pointed out the SP was not the only party to oppose the CAA but even common citizens, including women and children, were on roads against the ‘discriminatory’ law.
“How long will the BJP continue to discriminate against citizens on the basis of religion?, he questioned and said, “The BJP cannot quell people’s voice by dint of its brute majority.”
Reiterating the demand for a caste census in the country, he said the BJP was not ready for this because a caste census, he claimed would put an end to Hindu-Muslim conflict.