BJP’s UP in-charge Amit Shah Friday said the party is open to alliance with any party.
At a press conference in Varanasi this evening, Shah, while claiming that BJP-led NDA will bag more than 300 seats in the Lok Sabha elections, said: “We welcome all parties that are ready to participate in the development of the country. But the BJP does not believe in speculation.”
Reacting to BSP leader Mayawati’s comments that there was no possibility of her party supporting BJP, Shah said “BJP does not believe in political untouchability”.
Mayawati’s comments came a day after BJP PM candidate Narendra Modi indicated in an interview that he expected more parties to join the NDA after elections. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had Thursday ruled out any alliance with Modi.
Shah, however, sidetracked questions on whether Modi would retain the Varanasi seat if he won from Vadodara in Gujarat.
Asked about Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi’s proposed roadshow in Varanasi on Saturday, Shah said: “It is good. The DM has given them the permission to put up their point of view.” He said Modi has no other programme scheduled in Varanasi now.
The BJP’s UP in-charge also stuck to the party’s demand for the District Magistrate’s (Varanasi) transfer over the district administration’s denial of permission for a party rally in Beniyabagh in Varanasi and virtual road show of Modi, ]
Shah said: “If the EC is deploying paramilitary forces at every booth in Varanasi, we welcome it. This should be done to ensure free and fair elections.”
But, he insisted, the same should also be done in Azamgarh, pointing out that Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav was contesting from there and his son was UP Chief Minister .
“If this is not done, we will say the EC is not taking its job seriously. The technical reply of the EC is that they are acting on the report of the state administration. There is a slip up somewhere on its part,” said Shah.
He also said micro-observers and videography in every booth should not only be ensured in Azamgarh but also in constituencies like Ghosi and Ghazipur, which, he claimed, were sensitive.
Alleged eastern UP strongman Mukhtar Ansari is contesting from Ghosi, while his brother Afzal Ansari is in the fray from Ghazipur. Ansari’s Qaumi Ekta Dal has extended support to Congress nominee from Varanasi, Ajay Rai, in a bid to prevent split of anti-Modi votes, particularly among the minorities.