The “Nepal Sampark Cell” of BJP will organise camps in various districts of Uttar Pradesh from Monday to collect relief material and donations for the victims of earthquake that has created havoc in neighbouring Nepal.
The BJP had set up the cell in the state during the Lok Sabha elections in April 2014 to approach nearly 15 lakh voters who had their origin in Nepal. The parents or forefathers of these voters had came to the state for business and employment and got settled here.
The cell had run door-to-door campaign in areas having a sizable population of people hailing from Nepal to seek support for BJP for the polls. Nearly 2,000 such people have also become members of BJP.
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After the earthquake struck Nepal on Saturday, the office-bearers of the cell had organised a condolence meeting in the Gomti Nagar. “Today, we are holding special prayers for the deceased in two temples of Maa Sarla Devi in Telibagh and Vikas Nagar areas of Lucknow. These temples are religious places of Nepalis… A number of Nepali families visit these daily,” said Pravin Srivastava, state convenor of Nepal Sampark Cell.
Srivastava is a former worker of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad — the student wing of RSS.
“From Monday, we will organise camps to collect relief materials and donations,” he said. These camps will be held in districts like Kanpur, Gorakhpur, Awadh, Kashi and Bundelkhand region which have a considerable presence of Nepalis.
“Lakhimpur, Bahraich, Shrawasti, Balrampur, Siddharth Nagar, Maharajganj, Gorakhpur (at borders of Nepal), Lucknow, Kanpur and Agra districts have Nepalis residing there. Hence, the party has formed districts units there. Regional conveners of the cell have been given the responsibility to organise the camps,” said Srivastava. According to the party, nearly 1.5 lakh people — hailing from Nepal — reside in Lucknow.
The cell’s national convener Ajit Kumar had reached Kathmandu on Saturday to attend a yoga camp organised by Baba Ramdev. “Ajitji is camping in Kathmandu. He has worked there as a ABVP pracharak for a long time and has contacts there,” Srivastava said, adding that RSS volunteers in Nepal were already taking part in rescue operations.
While Kumar could not be reached as his cellphone was out of reach, he was reportedly in touch with the cell’s workers of UP through social media.