When BJP president Amit Shah asked MPs to pitch in for Delhi poll campaigning, the criterion was that the majority population in the area should be from the state to which the MP belongs.
But when Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, a first-time MP from Fatehpur in Uttar Pradesh, was sent to West Delhi’s Khayala, which falls under Rajouri Garden Assembly constituency — a Sikh majority area, this was not the case.
Niranjan Jyoti was sent there because many in the party believed that she is a “good and fiery orator”. In addition, the lack of a Sikh leader who can spear head campaigning in a Sikh-dominated area, prompted party leaders to use Niranjan Jyoti on the first day of the MP campaigning programme.
“The MLA of that area, Manjinder Singh Sirsa, said he would bring Akali leaders for campaigning, but he could not secure time from them. After that, we tried to get one of our own Sikh leaders, but he too was unavailable for campaigning. The idea then was to enlist fiery leaders for Day One of campaigning in the capital. This was how Niranjan Jyoti was shortlisted,”a senior party leader said.
However, making Giriraj Singh campaign in Dhirpur ward, which falls in Adarsh Nagar constituency, met the criterion set by the party for allocation of campaigning areas. While he too was listed in the “good orator” category, Giriraj Singh, who is an MP from Bihar, campaigned in Adarsh Nagar where many Purvanchalis reside.
“We have Azadpur Mndi and Wazirpur Industrial Area, where a majority of the labourers belong to Bihar and UP. There are other areas like Trinagar and JJ clusters of Wazirpur and Shakurpur, where a large number of Purvanchalis reside. Having Giriraj Singh with us boosted the party’s relations with them,” a party leader said.
The leader said the idea of MPs from other states campaigning in Delhi came after many felt that voters from a particular state would be delighted to meet an MP of that state. “Voters would always say that my state MP had come and met me and this would establish a bond with migrants in the city,” he said.
Minister should not have used that language: Sirsa
Manjinder Singh Sirsa, MLA from Rajouri Garden, who was present at the event where Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti made the controversial comment, said in an urban city like Delhi such language should not have been used. Sirsa, who shared the stage with Niranjan Jyoti, said, “This kind of language is not acceptable to anyone and that is the reason why even she apologised. The matter ends with the apology. That means she too feels that what she said was not appropriate.” – ENS