Bharatiya Janata Party national president Amit Shah not only urged his party men to reclaim the government in Uttar Pradesh in the 2017 assembly elections, but also advised them not to cross the line. Sharat Pradhan reports
On his first visit to the state capital after assuming the top office of the party, Shah was addressing 10,000 party workers drawn from different corners of the state, at the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh-run Saraswati Shishu Mandir in Nirala Nagar in Lucknow.
UP remains another test ground for Shah, who is credited with the party’s resounding victory at the Lok Sabha polls in May, when the BJP bagged a record number of Lok Sabha seats -- 73 out 80.
The entire election process was supervised by Shah, who called the shots -- right from the time of selection of candidates for the Lok Sabha election. And evidently, it was the amazing win that propelled him to the party’s highest seat.
“It is time that you all get down to working at the grassroots to ensure that a BJP government is in place in UP in the same manner as you all took the party to win 73 seats here,” Shah told the gathering. He emphasised, “My task will remain incomplete until a BJP chief minister is installed in Lucknow.”
He urged party men to highlight every misdeed or failing of the Samajwadi Party government, which, he felt was already badly discredited because of the deteriorating law and order in the state.
He also added a word of caution, “While staging demonstrations against wrongs, please do not cross the line and see to it that no situation is allowed to turn into a riot.
Training his guns at the ruling SP for its pro-minority stance, he said, “Remember, this party cannot rise above playing petty vote bank politics. It is a pity that they have not yet realised the futility of such an approach and the ruling dispensation was continuing to exert pressure on the district magistrates and police officials to follow this line of vote bank politics.”
Shah dismissed the recently submitted report of the Saharanpur riot fact-finding committee led by top UP minister Shivpal Yadav, as ‘one-sided’ and ‘biased’.
He said, “It is not surprising that the five-member committee constituted by the ruling party under the chairmanship of a prominent minister and members of his own coterie, promptly chose to blame it all on the BJP?”
He added, “Obviously, it was a report with a pre-determined plan; but I wish to tell Mulayam Singhji that UP’s 22 crore people will not get misled by such doctored reports as they all know who is inciting these riots. They can see the deteriorating law and order in the state.”
Echoing his mentor and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘development’ mantra, he emphasised, “Remember, our focus should remain on development, because it is development alone that can transform this nation as well as the lives of its people.”