New Delhi: After Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath sparked a controversy with his ‘Ali vs Bajrangbali’remark, Union Minister Manoj Sinha on Thursday evening threatened his detractorswhile addressing a gathering in Ghazipur. He said that anyone who points a finger at Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers will find himself paying for it within four days.
Sinha, who is seeking re-election from Ghazipur seat, was addressing a 'Kisan Panchayat Sammelan' in Saidpur area in Ghazipur district.
Sinha, a sitting MP of BJP, said, "BJP workers are geared up to crush corruption and the money earned through criminal activities. I can assure you that if any finger is pointed at a BJP worker, within four hours that finger will not be salamat (safe)."
The Union Minister did not stop there and added: "No criminal of Purvanchal is in a position to enter the boundary of Ghazipur and glower at BJP workers... If he dares to do it, his eyes will not remain safe."
The Union Minister is fielded against Azfal Ansari by Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Afzal is the brother of Mukhtar Ansari, who is in jail in various criminal cases.
Reacting to Sinha's comment,Abdul Hafiz Gandhi, spokesperson of Samajwadi Party, told Newsclick, "Why are BJP candidates threatening the people. Have BJP leaders lost faith in the electoral process, democracy and the Constitution? Are BJP workers beyond criticism? Why can’t accusing fingers be pointed out at them? Are BJP people not involved in corruption?”.
He accused Sinha of threatening the common voters with violence. “The Election Commission must take strict action against him so that people do not feel intimidated. People have a right to vote freely. We live in democracy and not a dictatorship", he added.
Gandhi said BJP leaders were making such statements as they were “desperate and frustrated”.
“Recently, Maneka Gandhi did the same thing in Sultanpur… In 2009, her son, Varun Gandhi had threatened a particular community andeven went to the extent of saying that he will chop the hands of the people of that community,” he said.
Recently, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath was banned for three days for campaigning by the EC for his divisive comments in a rally in Meerut. He had said that if Ali is with the BSP-SP-RLD alliance, then Bajrangbaliis with BJP.
Joining the league, Union Minister and a BJP candidate from Sultanpur, Maneka Gandhi had triggered a political stormby telling the Muslim community in Sultanpur to vote for her or face the risk of not receiving her help for jobs as a lawmaker.
Meanwhile, BJP leader Ranjeet Bahadur Srivastava on Thursday in Barabanki, asked voters to cast their ballot in favour of Prime Minister Narendra Modi if they want to "destroy Muslims".
Ghazipur Election Scenario
For Ghazipur Lok Sabha seat, the fight is between BJP and BSP. However, Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party (SBSP) president Om Prakash Rajbhar, after breaking the alliance with BJP for not being given enough seats to contest in the party's area of influence, has fielded its candidate Major Ramji Rajbhar, who is also in the race.
Parwez Khan, BSP leader told Newsclick, "Manoj Sinha has realised that he losing this time and to energise party workers, he made such an offensive statement. In Ghazipur, the fight is between Afzal Ansari and Manoj Sinha. In the 2014 election, Sinha won with a close margin againstSukanya Kushwaha. But this time, people of every caste are supporting Ansari, a'Mahagathbandhan' (alliance) candidate.”
He said there were over 1.50 lakh votes of the Rajbhar community, but the SBSP candidate was not known to local people and his party stand was still not clear on whether he will contest independently or join hands with BJP."
Local people also said Manoj Sinha was theTelecom Minister, yet the problem of network, including BSNL, was an open secret. “Not a single industry has been set up by Sinha in Ghazipur. Youth is this village do not have jobs,” they said.
Arun Rajbhar of national secretary of SBSP told Newsclick, "BJP has not announced its candidate from Ghosi seat and if they will allow us to contest the election from there on our own symbol, then we will withdraw our 39 candidates. Meanwhile, we have over two lakh Rajbhar voters in Ghazipur constituency, and if will contest, we will give tough fight to BJP and BSP.”