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20 villages in Amethi give poll boycott call

From next week, barriers will be erected in all villages to prevent entry of politicians, a native of Piparpur village said.

Lucknow |
April 5, 2014 12:02:53 am

Nearly 40,000 villagers in 20 villages of Rahul Gandhi’s parliamentary constituency have given a call to boycott parliamentary elections demanding inclusion in neighbouring Sultanpur district.

The villagers claim they are at a distance of 8-12 km from Sultanpur while they have to travel 27-35 km to reach Gauriganj, the district headquarters of Amethi.

“We have to change autorickshaw thrice to reach Gauriganj for work,” Harbhajan Singh, a native of Piparpur village, which has nearly 7,000 voters, said.

“We had held a meeting five days ago when we gave a poll boycott call. From next week, barriers will be erected in all villages to prevent entry of politicians,” he added.

The villages include Khanapur, Lahna, Piparpur, Narbhanpur, Durgapur, Raipur and Sonari. The villages are part of Bhadar development block under Amethi tehsil.

The villagers claimed their demand was raised during the Assembly elections in 2012. “At that time Gayatri Prasad Prajapati had assured to settle it and we voted for him defeating Rani Amita Singh. Prajapati did nothing, so we will boycott the elections,” he added.

“I am village pradhan for past 20 years of my village. We will not allow any leader, even Rahul Gandhi, to hold any meeting in our area. We had given several representations to Rahul also,” Anil Singh, village pradhan of Bhagipur village, said. Bhagipur is hardly 15 km from Sultanpur.

The villagers claimed they had given a representation to Rahul when he came to lay the foundation of the CRPF centre last year. They also claimed to have given an application to Prajapati, who is the local MLA and mining minister in Akhilesh Yadav’s government.

Dinesh Kumar Singh, a villager, however, said. “We will remain voters of Rahul Gandhi and not Varun Gandhi as the parliamentary constituency will remain Amethi and not Sultanpur. It is for our convenience that we want to be merged with Sultanpur.”

Amethi district was carved out in 2010 by including Amethi, Gauriganj and Jagdishpur tehsils from Sultanpur district and Salon and Tiloi tehsils from Rae Bareli district and named Chatrapati Shahuji Maharaj (CSM) Nagar during Mayawati regime. The notification was struck down by the High Court but CM Akhilesh Yadav issued a fresh notification in 2013 carving out Amethi but Salon, which was earlier part of CSM Nagar, was returned to Rae Bareli on the demand of SP MLA Asha Kishore. “She did this for her people but Prajapati failed to do the same for us,” Anil Singh, another villager, said.

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