A day before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s public meeting in Shahjahanpur district, the Congress and the BJP today sparred in Uttar Pradesh, with the opposition party alleging that the saffron party was “nervous”. The BJP dismissed the claims, saying that “fear had crept in the leaders of opposition parties”. Modi is scheduled to address a ‘Kisan Kalyan Rally’ tomorrow in Shahjahanpur, located 175 km from the state capital. Uttar Pradesh Congress spokesperson Ashok Singh claimed that as the the 2019 general elections were approaching, the BJP was again resorting to gimmicks to woo farmers. “Whether it is the famers of Bundelkhand, western Uttar Pradesh or Purvanchal, the way in which their loans were waived is an insult to them and their hard work,” he said.
Singh said the party would soon be holding protests over a number of issues, including those affecting the farmers and law and order, at the district-level across the state and added that next month ‘kisan bachao, desh bachao rally’ was likely to be organised. “This rally is intended to counter tomorrow’s rally, which the BJP is organising to win the confidence of farmers. It smacks of the ruling party’s nervousness,” he claimed.
Singh alleged that no concrete development work had been carried out in any field in the last four years and that was why the people of Uttar Pradesh and India wanted to get rid of the BJP. The president of Rashtriya Kisan Manch, an organisation working for farmers, Shekhar Dixit, when contacted said, “As soon as elections approach, all political parties start remembering farmers who are generally forgotten for a significant portion of the five-year tenure.” “But the important question is what is the actual condition of the farmer?
He is languishing at the same place, where he was five years back, when a number of promises were made to him. Farmers are still committing suicide,” he said. UP BJP general secretary Pankaj Singh dismissed the opposition’s claim that the BJP was feeling nervous, especially in Uttar Pradesh.
“I see this as rather a sign of fear which has crept in the leaders of the opposition political parties, who because of the faith reposed by the people in the BJP have chosen not to come out in public,” he alleged. UP Agriculture Minister Surya Pratap Shahi when contacted said, “Those, who are objecting to the prime minister’s visit represent an anti-development mindset, hence they are levelling such baseless allegations.” Tomorrow’s rally will be the fifth public address by Modi in UP in a span of three weeks, indicating that the BJP was already in election mode as 2019 Lok Sabha polls come closer. The party workers and leaders of eight districts and farmers are likely to attend the rally.