Updated: September 18, 2021 5:17:16 am
Upping the ante against the state government, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav on Friday alleged it had “done nothing” to save lives in rain-related incidents and asked people to exercise caution against electronic voting machines (EVMs) and district magistrates (DMs) in the Assembly polls next year.
Speaking on the occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti at the party office in Lucknow, Akhilesh said, “One can understand how much it rained yesterday (Thursday). Many lost their lives due to it. Many houses collapsed. In just one spell of rain, it has become clear that the government, which was supposed to make arrangements for this, has done nothing. Cars were floating on the roads. When so many people from the Vishwakarma community are here today, I am confident that this government is going to go.”
Persistent and heavy rainfall, accompanied by thunderstorms and lightning, has claimed at least 24 lives in Uttar Pradesh.
With UP bound for the Assembly polls next year, the former UP chief minister asked people to be wary of EVMs and DMs.
“We saw the election in Bihar and Bengal. Did they cheat in the Bihar election or not? The cheating in Bihar was done by EVMs (electronic voting machines) and DMs (district magistrates). But the people of Bengal responded. We must be careful of EVMs and DMs and must make people aware of it, and reply to the BJP and its people,” he said.
Akhilesh alleged that lies and rumours were being spread by the BJP to mislead people. “These people (BJP) are those who cheat Dalits and the backward community. They want to finish the country’s identity of unity in diversity. They are after our culture of coexistence… For their selfish interests and to get power, they will do anything. We have to be very careful of them. Some will be small lies, while some will be bigger lies,” said Akhilesh.
On the “mismanagement of Covid crisis”, Akhilesh alleged that the BJP government had stood with the rich during the crisis.
“Our labourers and workers were made to walk home while the rich were allowed to fly in planes,” he said.
Speaking about the Vishwakarma community, the SP chief said, “A holiday was granted for Vishwakarma Jayanti so that devotees could remember their God. A CM who does not work ended the holiday. This is disrespect to the people of the Vishwakarma community and their God. A God who created so many things. All the ancient capitals were built by Lord Vishwakarma… He was a great architect and creator, and this government has done nothing for Him or His followers.”
Lord Vishwakarma is worshipped as the ‘divine engineer of the world’ by artisans, craftsmen, mechanics, smiths, welders, industrial workers and others. If the SP was voted to power in the upcoming Assembly election, Akhilesh promised, it would form a ‘Shilpkaar Vishwakarma Board’ for improving workers’ condition and restore the Vishwakarma Jayanti holiday.
Priyanka seeks relief
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Friday urged the Uttar Pradesh government to assess the damage caused by heavy
rains to crops and pay adequate compensation to farmers. “Another calamity has struck the farmers who were already facing the brunt of recession and inflation. I request the UP government to assess the loss incurred by the farmers and pay them adequate compensation,” she said.
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