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Taking the poll fight to Amethi, the Lok Sabha constituency of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who has stitched up an alliance with the SP led by Akhilesh Yadav, BJP president Amit Shah Thursday claimed there was a BJP wave in Uttar Pradesh, “bigger than what it was in 2014 (Lok Sabha elections)”.
As he campaigned for his party candidate Garima Singh who faces Gayatri Prajapati of the SP, Shah told a rally in Amethi to “change the destiny of Uttar Pradesh… Badla lene ka samay aa gaya hai. Button dabakar parivartan karo, SP sarkar ko UP se ukhaad kar phek do (the time for revenge has come, press the button to bring change, throw out the SP government from UP).”
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“I see today a wave bigger than what it was in 2014 in favour of the Bharatiya Janata Party in Uttar Pradesh,” Shah told The Indian Express after his speech. He also said he thinks the BJP is up against the BSP as well in certain areas of the state.
While he attacked the SP, Shah took swipes at Rahul Gandhi in Amethi: “Rahul baba, aap ki aankho par Italian chasma laga hai (you are wearing Italian glasses, Rahul). Seeking to draw a distinction between the response of the Modi government and the previous UPA government on terror emanating from Pakistan, he said: “Ab intt ka jawab patthar se dete hain (the response now is tough).”
His remark that the BJP, if voted to power, would shut down slaughter houses in Uttar Pradesh drew applause from the crowd.
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He addressed four rallies Thursday in Chayal, Raniganj, Pratapgarh and Amethi — areas which in the past elections were considered weak areas for the BJP.
He has asked BJP leaders to corner anti-incumbency votes, and ensure that these don’t go to the BSP. Yet, the BSP, in the BJP gameplan, should remain strong enough to wean away Muslim votes from the SP.
Given the triangular contest in the state, Shah begins his speeches — as he did in Raniganj and Amethi Thursday — saying “Don’t vote for a BJP candidate, don’t vote to bring BJP to power. Vote to change the destiny of Uttar Pradesh. Throw out this SP government” before underlining “Bas ek baar, bas ek baar Uttar Pradesh mein Narendra Modi ko mauka do (give Narendra Modi one chance in Uttar Pradesh)”.