After Mayawati, Navjot Sidhu appeals to Muslims not to split their voteshttps://indianexpress.com/elections/navjot-sidhu-muslim-voters-bihar-rally-pm-modi-5678490/

After Mayawati, Navjot Sidhu appeals to Muslims not to split their votes

Addressing a rally in Bihar's Katihar Lok Sabha constituency, the Punjab minister said the BJP was running a divisive campaign and cautioned the Muslim voters against splitting their votes.

Opposition leaders welcome Pakistan PM's decision to release captured IAF pilot
Navjot Singh Sidhu. (File)

A day after the Election Commission barred BSP supremo Mayawati from campaigning for appealing directly to Muslim voters, Congress leader Navjot Sidhu on Tuesday spoke on similar line and asked the minority community members to stay united and vote together to defeat Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Addressing a rally in Bihar’s Katihar Lok Sabha constituency, the Punjab minister said the BJP was running a divisive campaign and cautioned the Muslim voters against splitting their votes.

Asserting that Muslims were the majority community in the region, Sidhu appealed to the community to stay united and vote to ensure victory for the Congress.

The cricketer-turned-politician also alleged that the BJP was trying to divide the Muslim votes by getting parties like Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM to field candidates in Bihar.

Main aapko chetavni dene aya hun Muslim bhaiyon, ye baant rahe hain apko, ye yahan Owaisi jaise logon ko la ke,ek nai party khadi kar aap logon ka vote baant ke jitna chahte hain. Agar tum log ikathe hue, ekjut hoke vote dala to Modi sulat jaega (There is politics of division on the basis of caste underway here. They are trying to divide your votes by getting Owaisi to field his party candidates. If Muslims unite and vote together then Modi will be defeated),” Sidhu said.

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The Congress leader’s remarks come close on the heels of the Election Commission barring Mayawati from campaigning for two days over a similar appeal to Muslim voters in Saharanpur and Bareilly districts during a joint rally of the BSP-SP alliance on April 7.

At the rally, Mayawati had described the BJP and the Congress as two sides of the same coin and cautioned voters, “particularly Muslims”, against splitting their votes in the eight western UP seats that went to polls in the first phase.

“The Congress is not strong enough to take on the BJP and I want to tell all of you, particularly Muslims, that a vote for the Congress here will only help the BJP. Do not split your votes,” Mayawati said.