Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav on Wednesday declared BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha’s wife, Poonam Sinha, as the SP-BSP-RLD alliance candidate from Lucknow. Rebel BJP MP Shatrughan is Congress candidate from Patna Sahib. Akhilesh made the announcement at a press conference attended by Poonam and his wife Dimple Yadav who is SP’s Kannauj candidate. Poonam joined the SP on Tuesday and will contest against BJP candidate, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, and Congress candidate Acharya Pramod Krishnam.
Asked about the recent derogatory statement made by party senior leader Azam Khan against his rival BJP candidate in Rampur, Jaya Prada, Dimple asked the media to not focus on “such small small things” and instead talk about the good works done by the SP. She also said that comments against a woman is not a good thing, though adding that the media did not raise the matter with this prominence when BJP’s Daya Shankar Singh made vulgar comments on BSP chief Mayawati.
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“Iske alawa Priyanka Gandhi ji ke khilaf bola gaya hai, hamare khilaf bola gaya hai, tab media wale baat kyu nahi uthate hain. Jab BJP ke kisi pratyashi ke khilaf bola jata hai tabhi baat kyu uthti hai. Aur mai samajhti hu jo Samajwadi Party ne aitihasik kaam kiya hai mahilaon ki suraksha ko leke, iss tarah ke kaam aur rajyo ko bhi karne chahiye (Statements have been made against Priyanka Gandhi, against me. Why didn’t the media raise the issue then? Only when something is said against a BJP candidate, the matter is raised. I think that SP has done historical work for women’s safety and other states should follow it),” she said.
“Ye aap logo ki jimmedari banti hai ki aap iss tarah ke kaam ka achha prachar karen… Aur in chhoti chhoti baaton me padne ki koi zarurat nahi hai. Aur kyuki election time hai… dhyan bhatkane ki jo takat hai wo BJP ke paas hai (It is your responsibility that you advertise such good works. And there is no need to be involved such small small things. As this is election time…. and the BJP has the power to divert minds),” she added.
Without giving a direct answer to the question, Akhilesh said that his party and the leaders have always respected women and will always do so. “The SP should not have to say this over and over that it respects women and girls… Samajwadi Party has done a lot to provide safety for women, but there is so much discussion on the words and statements of Azam Khan. SP and BSP leaders have always respected women and will always do so,” Akhilesh said.
“When there was the meeting on policing during chief minister’s conference in Delhi, then Uttar Pradesh chief secretary praised the Dial-100. Go to 1090 and see how girls and daughters were helped. But we have a great Baba chief minister who ended the 1090 service…,” he added.
Making the announcement of Poonam’s candidacy from Lucknow, he said that it was the decision of the party and one of the reasons for the decision is that the first MP from Lucknow was a woman.
Suggesting that the BJP was conspiring against Lucknow MP Rajnath Singh, he said, “It is BJP’s conspiracy that whoever releases their manifesto is retired later and not given a ticket. If Lucknow’s development is halted then it is under a conspiracy by the PM and state CM. The person who read BJP manifesto in 2014, was he given ticket? Now understand, that someone else read the manifesto in 2019 and the BJP is conspiring against him.”
“Under that conspiracy, PM and state CM stopped all the works in Lucknow… Lucknow was to be made a smart city, but when I open newspapers, I find that there are smart cows on the roads instead,” he said, once again claiming that the SP-BSP-RLD alliance is very much capable of stopping the BJP.