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Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Shah sounds start of UP poll campaign, roots for Yogi as CM

Union Home Minister Amit Shah said that if the people wanted Narendra Modi to return as Prime Minister in 2024, they should vote for Yogi Adityanath as CM in 2022.

Written by Lalmani Verma | Lucknow |
Updated: October 30, 2021 3:15:35 am
amit shah, Narendra modi, modi, Yogi, UP CM, UP election, UP election 2022, Lucknow, Lucknow news, Indian express, Indian express news, current affairsYogi Adityanath, Amit Shah at the BJP Vijay Sankalp rally in Agra. (Express Photo by Gajendra Yadav)

Scotching speculation over the BJP’s chief ministerial face in the coming Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said here Friday that if the people wanted Narendra Modi to return as Prime Minister in 2024, they should vote for Yogi Adityanath as CM in 2022.

Launching a mega membership drive across UP called ‘Mera Parivar-BJP Parivar’, Shah said: “Modi ji ke netratva mein agla joh Lok Sabha ka chunav jeetna hai 24 (2024) mein, uski neenv daalne ka kaam Uttar Pradesh ka 22 (2022) ka Vidhan Sabha karne waala hai. Yeh main UP ki janata ko batane aaya hoon ki Modi ji ko phir se ek baar 24 mein pradhan mantri banana hai, toh 22 mein phir ek baar Yogi ji ko mukhyamantri banana padega. Tab jaakar ye desh ka vikas aage badh sakta hai (The 2024 Lok Sabha elections that we have to win under Modi ji’s leadership, its foundation will be laid by the Uttar Pradesh 2022 Assembly polls. I want to tell the people of UP that if you want Modi ji to return as Prime Minister in 2022, you have to make Yogi ji CM again in 2022. Only then can the country progress).”

The membership drive will continue till December 31. Union Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra, whose constituency falls under the Awadh region for which Shah’s meeting was organised Friday, shared the stage with Shah, Yogi and other Union ministers from UP. This was the first official or BJP meeting in UP where Mishra was present on the dais since his son Ashish’s convoy ploughed into protesting farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri, leaving four dead. Four others, including BJP workers, had died in the subsequent violence. Ashish is facing murder charges and is under arrest.

Shah repeated his call to vote for Adityanath at the end of his speech, saying that he was requesting with folded hands: “Modi ji ko ek aur mauka de dijiye, Yogi ji ko phir se mukhyamantri bana dijiye (Give another chance to Modi ji. Make Yogi ji CM one more time).” He asked the people to again give the BJP more than 300 seats in the 403-member UP Assembly.

Shah said the Samajwadi Party, BSP and Congress were “parivarwadi (family-based)” parties which can’t work for the welfare of the 22 crore people of UP, and the state needed the leadership of Modi and Adityanath. He said people could see for themselves the change under Adityanath, including the crackdown on criminals, and the development works. He mentioned that over 150 criminals were killed in encounters in the Adityanath government.

Adityanath and his team had fulfilled more than 90% of the promises made in the 2017 poll manifesto and would meet the remaining in the next two months, Shah said. The Home Minister also mentioned the abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir, as promised by the BJP.

Again, the SP was the focus of the BJP attack on Friday, including in Shah’s speech. Come elections, “those who sat at home for five years have got new clothes stitched” and were dreaming of being voted to power, the Home Minister said. “I want to ask Akhilesh (SP president Akhilesh Yadav), how many days did you spend abroad in the past five year years? Where were you when UP faced Covid and floods?”
Shah accused the SP and BSP of “destroying” UP, particularly its law and order. He talked of the alleged exodus from Kairana in western UP of Hindu families under the previous SP government, and claimed that under Opposition rule, women were afraid to step out of home, while musclemen flourished. “Today, no one can force anybody into an exodus in UP. I cannot spot a single bahubali, even through binoculars… At all festivals, whether Deepawali or Chhath, a 16-year-old girl wearing jewellery can drive a Scooty on the roads of UP even at midnight.”

Shah said the SP would taunt the BJP in previous elections on the lack of a date for the promised Ram temple at Ayodhya. “Akhilesh babu, the foundation of the temple has been laid,” the Home Minister said.

He also recalled the firing on kar sevaks under the SP government in 1990. “It is the same state, and Ram lalla is about to be installed under a skyscraper temple.”

He added that unlike Opposition parties which ran the state for themselves, their families or castes, the Adityanath government worked for every section and class.

The BJP was beginning its work for the 2022 polls with the membership drive, Shah said. “We accept family planning, but when it is about the BJP, we break the rule. The BJP should have maximum members.”

Addressing the gathering, Adityanath said the Awadh region was very important for the BJP as it included Ayodhya, adding that the whole world would see the Diwali celebrated in the town this time.

Shah later held a closed-door meeting, where senior BJP leaders were told to connect with old veterans who had moved away from the party, as well as another meeting at the party headquarters, where Adityanath and the two deputy CMs were present.

“The veterans are the party’s cadre, they can be upset or disconnected with the party, but ideologically they are always with BJP. We have to take their support in reaching voters, that was the message of today’s meeting,” said a party leader.

“We were asked to send our feedback on government and organisational activities,” said another leader.

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