Akhilesh, Rahul call for crushing BJP''s divisive politics of anger

Mayawati, Saffron party flay alliance
Report by: 
Agencies
Lucknow
30 Jan 2017

In a clear show of camaraderie and personal bonding, the scions of Congress and Samajwadi Party today came together to give a call for crushing BJP's divisive politics of anger for the progress, prosperity, peace and people of Uttar Pradesh in the Assembly elections.

In their first joint appearance after the alliance between the Congress and SP came through after hard bargaining, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi said the alliance was for three Ps(progress, prosperity and peace) to which SP president and UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav added the last P(people). Days after stitching up an electoral alliance for the high stakes assembly polls, Rahul arrived here in a special plane from Delhi for the joint press meet followed by a joint road show in the state capital. The meeting also assumes significance as this was the maiden outing of the two leaders since reaching a seat-sharing agreement for the polls, which starts from February 11. With an aim to tell people that the two parties were their choice in the elections, Rahul and Akhilesh launched the poll campaign with a tagline 'UP ko ye saath pasand hai' (UP relishes this alliance).

The refrain of the duo at the crowded press conference was to send out a strong message to party cadre from both sides to work together to ensure the defeat of the saffron party. To a question on Ram Temple, the Congress leader said since it was a sub-judice matter, he would not comment on it. He said BJP rakes up the issue during every election. Rahul’s reply came to a question on BJP's manifesto which says efforts would be made to get Ram temple built in Ayodhya within the law. Terming themselves as two wheels of a bicycle, Akhilesh said "There is not much difference in ages between us and today is the beginning."

"Rahul and I will take the state ahead on the path of prosperity," he said at the hour-long press conference. The Congress leader said partnership between Congress and SP is an answer to BJP's divisive politics of anger. "The alliance is the confluence of Ganga and Yamuna out of which the Saraswati of development will come out...We have similarities and opposition too. We want to contest the elections on similarities and will also have to do some compromises...," Rahul chipped in. Rahul played down certain unresolved issues like who will contest how many seats in Amethi and Rae Bareli, the stronghold of his party, terming them as peripheral issues. "This is a historic alliance...all leaders are working together for a goal which is to defeat fascist forces, RSS, BJP..."Alliance for Lok Sabha polls is open for discussion," Rahul said to a question as to whether he will be the PM face in 2019 elections as Akhilesh is the CM face in 2017 polls. Rahul, who took most of the questions, was also clear that though he admits the BSP government did commit mistakes but his respect for Mayawati and Kanshi Ram was intact and there can be no comparison between Mayawati and BJP.

"I respect Mayawatiji personally and Kanshiramji. BSP ran government and committed mistakes but the respect is intact...There is a lot of difference between BJP and BSP. BJP's ideology is harmful to country but Mayawati's ideology is not. Do not compare Mayawatiji with RSS," the Congress leader stressed. To a question on Congress' earlier foray with BSP in the 1996 assembly polls, Rahul said "History is not static and keeps changing and saying that alliance in 1996 with BSP was wrong and so it will be wrong this time too...situation is different now and it is right strategically for the state, the country as well as for Samajwadis."

To a specific question as to whether Sonia Gandhi and Mulayam Singh Yadav will take part in electioneering, Rahul said:"We will want all those who support our ideology to come with us", declining to divulge the campaign strategy. Addressing the people, the Uttar Pradesh chief minister today predicted more than 300 seats in the assembly election to the Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance. He said the people of Uttar Pradesh had made up their mind and were backing the newly-forged alliance to the hilt. Asked why he had tied up with the Congress if his claims of work done in his five-year tenure were true, the 43-year-old Chief Minister said the new alliance was needed to "take ahead the good work". "We were and are sure of crossing the majority mark on our own. But now with the 'hand' joining the 'cycle', we are confident of crossing the 300 seats mark," he added.

Meanwhile the Congress and Samajwadi Party alliance was today termed as "opportunistic and unholy" by their political opponents with BSP chief Mayawati calling it a conspiracy to indirectly benefit BJP. Mayawati said, "it was a result of selfish politics of both these parties and a conspiracy to indirectly benefit anti-poor and pro-capitalist BJP". "The alliance is on the lines dil mile na mile haath milate rahiye (keep joining hands even if your hearts don't meet) and though it is being said that they have come together to stop the BJP, but the reality is that this is an unholy alliance struck at the instigation of BJP to stop BSP from getting full majority and forming a sarvjan hitai sarvjan sukahye government in the state," she said. Questioning the alliance, BJP general secretary Vijay Bahadur Pathak alleged that the real motive behind such "unholy" alliance was to serve their vested interests.