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The UPShot | RSS-BJP-State Meet Message for 2024 : ‘Just Woo It’ – Dalits, SC, ST, Youths, Non-Hindus

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Political developments are never-ending in the country’s most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, but some gain the top spot. The recent tripartite meeting between the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the UP government was one such instance.

ALSO READ | Ghosi Bypoll Result an Accident, BJP Will Win All 80 Seats in UP in 2024 LS Polls: Keshav Prasad Maurya

The meeting, at a crucial time when UP is gearing up for the 2024 Lok Sabha Polls, looked at expanding the party’s base among the Dalit-dominated pockets and its reach among non-Hindus to mobilise the youths.

VOTER BASE IN DALIT-DOMINATED LOCALITIES

The three-day meeting chaired by RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat sent a clear message to the functionaries and party workers to leave no stone unturned to woo Dalit voters and check their dwindling numbers, when it comes to the BJP’s vote bank.

“The sharp decline among the party’s Dalit voters also remained a matter of concern at the meeting,” a party insider said.

GHOSI DEFEAT A MATTER OF CONCERN

The BJP’s defeat in the recent Ghosi bypolls and the diversion of Dalit voters towards the Samajwadi Party (SP) also came up during the discussion.

Ghosi is an Other Backward Class (OBC), Scheduled Caste (SC), Dalit and Scheduled Tribe-dominated seat, where there are around 60,000 Dalit voters. However, as the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) took a backseat in the elections, there were only two major parties in the fray – the BJP and Samajwadi Party (SP). In such a situation, the 60,000 traditional BSP voters went with the SP, which is why the BJP lost, according to political analysts.

ALSO READ | SP Eyes All 80 UP Lok Sabha Seats with Strengthening Cadre, Booth Management Core of Its Mission 2024

YOUTHS & NON-MUSLIMS

Roping in non-Hindus, especially the youths, remained the second-most discussed agenda in the RSS meet. Party insiders said the focus was to make the youth aware of the RSS ideology.

“In October, the seven-day Prathmik Shiksha Camp would be organised in UP. The main focus of these camps would be to induct youths from the marginalised sections, including the OBCs and Dalits,” said an insider.

He said that the RSS also plans to rope in non-Hindus to maintain the balance between the party’s traditional voters and non-Hindu voters.

“We were told not to discriminate between Hindu and non-Hindu voters. Instead, accept the invites of Muslims and non-Hindus and connect with all,” a party worker said.

ALSO READ | Ghosi Bypoll Results 2023: ‘1st Victory for INDIA bloc’, SP Defeats BJP by Over 40,000 Votes

REACH OUT TO NON-HINDUS AND DALIT VOTERS

As part of the public outreach, the RSS has also pressed in the ‘party vistaraks’ in the rural pockets of UP, where they will work among the rural folks, connect with the OBC, Dalits and non-Hindus and make them aware of the RSS ideology.

In the three-day meeting, the RSS leaders also held closed-door meetings with UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Deputy Chief Minister Brajesh Pathak and Keshav Prasad Maurya, along with BJP President Bhupendra Chaudhary.

Although RSS functionaries refused to disclose the minutes of the meeting, sources said the BJP’s strategy to retain power in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections remained the main agenda. They also discussed the awareness programmes, camps and various activities that would be held in different parts of the state to woo those belonging to the lower sections of society.

LOVE JIHAD: A MATTER OF CONCERN

Other than political issues, the social issue of love jihad was also discussed at length.

“Of late, the issues of love jihad, especially in the rural pockets of UP, have become rampant. It’s a matter of concern and there is a dire need to put a check to such malpractices,” the RSS Chief said in the meeting.

WOOING DALIT, OBC, SC & ST VOTERS

However, political analysts said that RSS meetings, especially ahead of the elections, are not a new thing in UP.

“Since 2017, ever since the BJP came to power in UP, RSS meetings have become common. However, the Dalit outreach programme seems to be the main agenda for the upcoming 2024 Lok Sabha Polls,” said Shashikant Pandey, head of department of political science at Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University.

ALSO READ | SP Set to Play ‘PDA’ Card in 2024 Post Ghosi Win but Wooing Dalit Voters Will Be Tough After BSP Snub

Pandey said the BJP’s performance in the tougher seats, including Ambedkarnagar, Azamgarh, Ghazipur, Ghosi, Lalganj and Jaunpur, would be a challenging task as the result in the 2019 polls was unsatisfactory.

“In such a situation, wooing Dalit, OBC, SC and ST voters would be a crucial task for the BJP. It is for the same reason why the BJP recently inducted Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party (SBSP) Chief Om Prakash Rajbhar and other OBC leaders from the opposition parties to expand its outreach in the Dalit-dominated seats,” he said.



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Daughter As IND Candidate, Sympathy Card For Mukhtar’s Death: Afzal Ansari’s Plan For Ghazipur Hat-trick

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Afzal Ansari (in cap) told News18 that he wants people to deliver justice to him at EVM booths for his brother’s death. (News18)

The Allahabad High Court may reserve its order after hearing the rejoinder arguments in the Gangster Act case from Afzal Ansari’s defence on Monday.

Hum Titahari nahi hain jo pair upar kar ke aasmaan girne ka intezar karein (I’m not the Titahari bird who will lift its legs and wait for the sky to fall),” said Samajwadi Party’s (SP) Ghazipur candidate Afzal Ansari when questioned about the threat of his disqualification from the electoral battle. The reference is to a local folklore about the Titahari bird which sleeps with her feet pointed towards the sky, apprehensive that the sky might fall and her feet will keep it at bay.

The Allahabad High Court may reserve its order after hearing the rejoinder arguments from Afzal’s defence on Monday. Prosecution has demanded that his conviction under the Gangster Act be upheld. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers in Ghazipur are hopeful that the court judgement will go against Ansari, thereby, disqualifying him from the election process, just ahead of polling Ghazipur on June 1.

Afzal Ansari has fielded his daughter Nusrat Ansari as an Independent candidate from the Ghazipur seat. When asked if this was his back up plan in case of disqualification, a combative Ansari pointed out his family’s freedom fighter legacy and his biggest political competitor Jammu and Kashmir LG Manoj Sinha.”Manoj Sinha’s son has the right to dream politically, but Afzal Ansari’s daughter doesn’t? Ansari Sahab’s (Afzal Ansari’s father who was a freedom fighter) daughter was Zohra Begum, she went to jail fighting the British, her family members do not have the right to fight elections? We are fighting this election against those who want to keep the oppressed, oppressed,” Ansari told News18 at his Mohammadabad resident.

His daughter Nusrat, a graduate from the Lady Shri Ram College in Delhi, had already left to campaign. On the face of it, it looks like a father-daughter contest. but Ansari supporters have no doubt that Afzal Ansari has decided to hand over the political legacy to his daughter, unwilling to take any chances with the court order.

Ansari was disqualified as an MP last year after a special MP-MLA court in Ghazipur convicted and sentenced him for four years in a Gangsters Act case related to former BJP MLA Krishnanand Rai. The Supeme Court stayed the conviction paving the way for the two-time MP to recontest Lok Sabha polls. The Supreme Court, however, has asked that the case be decided by High Court by June 30.

Meanwhile, Afzal Ansari is hoping the sympathy card will help the family sail through in the voter’s court. “Government might try with all its might but ultimately what janta decides will prevail. Inquilab is in my destiny. I am Afzal Ansari and I am meant to struggle, I will do it till my last breath,” Afzal, who started his political career with the Communist Party, told News18.

When asked about the Uttar Pradesh government’s charge that Mukhtar Ansari, Afzal’s brother, was a mafia, Afzal countered saying he was actually a “messiah who was poisoned in jail”. “The fact that even after his death, everyone is referring to him, from the media to UP CM to the country’s Prime Minister, that tells you that Mukhtar is amar (Immortal). You might call him mafia, but for public he was a hero. When the BJP is wiped clean on June 4, you will know that he was a hero. Use mitti mein mila diya, to puraskar to milna chahiye (they should be rewarded for runing him), but you will see on June 4 whether they get a reward or punishment. If they are punished, you would know that everything that is being said about Mukhtar and mafia was a lie,” Afzal said.

Explore in-depth coverage of Lok Sabha Election 2024 Schedule, Voter Turnout, Upcoming Phase And Much More At News18 Website



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‘Yamraaj’ Will Be Waiting for Those Who Dare to Harass Women, Businessmen in UP: CM Adityanath

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Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Sunday said if anybody dares to harass women and businessmen in the state, ”Yamraaj” would be waiting for that person at the next crossroads.

At an election rally in Ghazipur, he said the gangsters who once flouted the law openly, are being trampled by the bulldozer of Uttar Pradesh. Security and the rule of law are the first conditions of good governance, the BJP leader asserted.

The Uttar Pradesh government has courted controversy in recent years over the demolition of properties belonging to alleged criminals and the opposition has charged the Adityanath dispensation of targeting Muslims.

“No one can play with the safety of daughters and businessmen. If anyone tries to do so, then ’Yamraaj’ (Hindu god of death) will be found waiting for that person at the next crossroads,” the Uttar Pradesh chief minister said at the rally in Ghazipur.

“We are devotees of Lord Ram and we will not breathe easy till we eliminate sinners,” he said without elaborating on the issue.

In an apparent reference to gangster-politician Mukhtar Ansari who died in March, the chief minister said, ”A mafia here calls himself hailing from Brigadier Usman’s family to hide his dark deeds. This is a blatant lie.” Brigadier Mohammad Usman was awarded the Maha Vir Chakra for his acts of bravery in the 1947-48 Indo-Pak war.

Addressing the gathering, Adityanath said, ”Your votes have built the temple of Lord Ram in Ayodhya, increased the respect of the country (worldwide), provided security on the borders and got development works done. Development is being seen everywhere in the form of highways, airports, railways, waterways and taps in every house.” ”But, when the same votes went to the Congress and the Samajwadi Party (SP), they sold the honour of the country, promoted terrorism and Naxalism, endangered the safety of daughters and businessmen while the mafia, sitting in open jeeps (apparently referring to Mukhtar Ansari), kept Hindus in an atmosphere of fear and terror.” Besides Ghazipur, Adityanath also addressed poll rallies in Mirzapur, Varanasi and Gorakhpur.

In Gorakhpur, Adityanath said Mahant Digvijaynath and Mahant Avedyanath had started the Ram Mandir movement and hence ”the entire country, including Gorakhpur, says that we will bring those (to power) who have brought Lord Ram. Because of Modi ji, Ram Lalla has been seated in Ayodhya after 500 years.” He claimed that earlier money used to be spent on cemeteries, now it is spent on renovating monasteries and temples.

”The SP and Congress say that if their government is formed, they will implement personal laws. That is, they want to implement Taliban rule. Women will stay at home wearing burqa. But they should know that BJP will run the country only according to the Constitution of Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar,” Adityanath said.

At a rally in favour of Mirzapur Lok Sabha candidate Anupriya Patel and Robertsganj parliamentary seat nominee Rinki Kol, he said India has secured its borders and achieved new milestones of development in the past 10 years.

”Previous governments had a narrow mindset and that is why they did not think about development. Modi has provided houses to over one lakh poor people in Mirzapur under the PM Awas Yojana. Members of the Kol, Gaud, Chero, Tharu, and Musahar communities in Mirzapur and Sonbhadra also got houses,” Adityanath said.

Claiming that people here struggled for every drop of water before 2014, he said in the last 10 years every house has been provided clean drinking water under the ’Har Ghar Nal Yojana’.

Adityanath alleged the region came under the grip of the Naxals due to the policies of the Samajwadi Party and the Congress.

”They (opposition) deprived you of development works and allowed gangsters to take control over mining and other resources here. Now, it is time for you to make them yearn for every single vote,” he added.

Referring to the redevelopment of the Kashi Vishwanath temple corridor in Varanasi, the chief minister said the place is now attracting global attention in a new way.

”After 500 years, Lord Ram has been enshrined in his temple in Ayodhya and the Vindhyavasini Dham corridor project is nearing completion. Now, no Shravan Kumar will have to carry elderly parents on his shoulders for ’darshan’ as the ropeway is ready,” he said.

Shravan Kumar, a character in the Ramayana, carried his blind and elderly parents on his shoulders and took them on pilgrimage.

At a poll rally in Varanasi for Union minister Mahendra Nath Pandey, who is contesting from the Chandauli Lok Sabha seat, Adityanath said, ”Upon examining the manifestoes of the Congress and SP, one might infer a pro-Pakistan stance.” ”They propose extending reservation benefits meant for backward classes, scheduled castes, and scheduled tribes to Muslims. Nonetheless, Modi ji has emphatically stated that no force on Earth can undermine the existing structure of reservations,” he said.

The BJP leader alleged that the Congress and the SP are ”incapable of ensuring security, fostering development and promoting the welfare of the underprivileged. With Modi at the helm, development, welfare, security, and preserving India’s cultural heritage are assured.” The seventh phase of polling in Uttar Pradesh will be held on June 1, covering the Lok Sabha seats of Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Maharajganj, Kushinagar, Deoria, Bansgaon (SC), Ghosi, Salempur, Ballia, Ghazipur, Chandauli, Mirzapur and Robertsganj (SC).

Explore in-depth coverage of Lok Sabha Election 2024 Schedule, Voter Turnout, Upcoming Phase And Much More At News18 Website

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)



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‘May Modi Become Chief Minister Again’: Bihar CM Nitish Kumar’s Faux Pas At Bihar Rally

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Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.(Image/PTI File)

In his speech, the JD (U) chief also reiterated that he has realigned with BJP for good and recalled two short-lived alliances with RJD, saying both lasted for “about a month or a month-and-a-half (ek dedh mahine ke liye)”

JD (U) president Nitish Kumar on Sunday wished another term as “chief minister” for Narendra Modi, who had ruled Gujarat prior to becoming the prime minister.

The Bihar chief minister, who has of late been making news for goof-ups, made the faux pas at an election rally on the outskirts of Patna.

“It is my wish that Narendra Modi becomes a chief minister again (phir se mukhya mantri banein),” said Kumar, causing those sharing the dais, including local BJP MP Ravi Shankar Prasad, to squirm in their chairs.

Kumar’s confidant Sanjay Kumar Jha, a Rajya Sabha MP and JD (U) national general secretary, was seen getting up and pointing out to his boss that the word was ‘pradhan mantri’ or prime minister.

“Of course, he is the prime minister,” snapped the septuagenarian, clearly unmindful of his slip of tongue.

In his speech, the JD (U) chief also reiterated that he has realigned with BJP for good and recalled two short-lived alliances with RJD, saying both lasted for “about a month or a month-and-a-half (ek dedh mahine ke liye)”.

A section of the crowds stood sniggering, recalling similar goof ups from the leader in the recent past when he ended up hoping for “more than four thousand (char hazar se zyada) seats for the NDA”.

Several media outfits shared the video clip of Kumar’s latest goof-up, some recalling the once famous rivalry between the Bihar CM and his the then Gujarat counterpart, and, wondering whether it was a Freudian slip.

Explore in-depth coverage of Lok Sabha Election 2024 Schedule, Voter Turnout, Upcoming Phase And Much More At News18 Website

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)



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