August 26, 2021 4:43:48 am
The ruling BJP, in coordination with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Uttar Pradesh government, is planning to launch an ‘Asthi Kalash Yatra’ to disperse the ashes of former chief minister Kalyan Singh at several areas of the state.
Singh died on August 21 in Lucknow after a prolonged illness. He was cremated in Narora in Bulandshahr, two days ago.
According to sources, the ashes of the departed leader are likely to be dispersed in Varanasi, Prayagraj as well as in Saryu River in Ayodhya. The ashes would be mounted on a ‘Rath’, which will set off from Narora on August 27 and reach these destinations covering different districts.
With the next Assembly polls drawing near, the party wants to project Singh as a ‘Hindutva’ and an ‘OBC icon’ and, to this end, the ‘Kalash Yatra’ is likely to go a long way in driving home the message. A similar yatra had been taken out carrying the ashes of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
“The details are still in the planning stage. After talks with his (Singh’s) family, we will decide if the yatra should cover all 75 districts or some districts on the route. What’s guaranteed is that the yatra will be a grand one, in accordance with his stature,” a senior BJP leader said, adding that discussions are on with the state government to ensure proper coordination for the event.
Senior BJP leaders had spoken of Kalyan Singh as the driving force behind the Ram Temple movement.
On Tuesday, the party’s OBC leaders, including Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya and cabinet minister Swami Prasad Maurya, targeted former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav for not offering his last respects to Singh personally. They also projected Kalyan Singh as the “tallest OBC leader”.
Party sources said that while Singh’s ashes would be carried around the state in a ‘Rath’, several senior leaders would take part in the yatra at different places.
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