How do you see the results?
It is a victory of truth against lies. This is the result because BJP harassed the public — through inflation and its lies. The BJP’s victory chariot will be buried in Kairana in the 2019 elections too.
Who should get credit for your victory?
First, credit should go to the people of Kairana, then to the parties who supported me, like the RLD, SP, BSP and Congress. Special credit goes to RLD chief Ajit Singh and Jayant Chaudhary for their hard work. The SP’s senior leaders were present here and they cooperated as ordinary workers.
The BJP launched an aggressive campaign, with CM Yogi Adityanath addressing two rallies in Kairana.
I have strong objections to Yogi’s remarks against RLD leaders Ajit Singh and Jayant Chaudhary. Yogi said they were going door to door to beg for votes. It appears that Yogi has no understanding of politics. Because in politics, leaders go to the public to appeal for votes.
In your view, how successful is the Opposition alliance?
It is 100 per cent successful. The bypoll result has given direction to the future of the alliance. This alliance has defeated arrogant BJP leaders, who have been claiming that there is no alternative to the BJP. It has given a new direction to politics, ahead of the 2019 elections.
Did you get votes on the issue of “ganna” (sugarcane) or “Jinnah” (Muhammad Ali Jinnah)?
I got votes on all issues, like delay in payment to sugarcane farmers and corruption in the administration system. Muzaffarnagar riots was not an issue… The BJP triggered riots and then raised the issue again and again for political gain. But these issues had no impact on the elections. Jinnah was also not an issue… the BJP tried to make that an issue. The real issues were related to farmers and sugarcane.
There were differences between Jats and Muslims after the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots. Are those differences over now?
Jats and Muslim were together from the time of Chaudhary Charan Singh and there were no differences till 2013. The BJP used the policy of divide and rule. Now, both Jats and Muslims have come together because they have understood that the BJP used them.
Which party or individual played a crucial role?
We were all united, every party associated with the alliance contributed to the victory. People were asking about the BSP’s support, but we were aware that BSP workers were moving with us. The BSP has its own style of working. SP president Akhilesh Yadav could not come, but the entire team of state SP leaders was with me throughout the campaign.
Will you contest on RLD ticket in 2019?
This will be decided at the appropriate time. But I can say that this alliance will move ahead and will be successful again in 2019.
What is the message of this poll result?
The message is very clear — the public will remove the “jumlebaaj” government in 2019. They don’t want a government which lies.
You were earlier with BSP and then SP. Your son is SP’s MLA from Kairana. Why did you contest on the RLD’s symbol?
The RLD was a part of the alliance, and the decision to contest on the RLD symbol was a part of our election strategy.