Hate Speeches Fill West UP & All To Be Blamed

The two re­cent FIRs in west UP re­veal the two sides of poll-time com­mu­nal di­vide but seem to be hav­ing lit­tle im­pact on hate­mon­gers

The Economic Times - - Pure Politics -

Meerut/Muzaffarnagar: Two first i n f o r mat i o n re­ports at the Than­ab­hawan po­lice sta­tion in Muzaffarnagar re­flect two sides of com­mu­nal po­lar­i­sa­tion in western Ut­tar Pradesh in the run-up to the as­sem­bly elec­tion.

The BJP can­di­date Suresh Rana is ac­cused of say­ing that a win for him would lead to a cur­few in Mus­lim­dom­i­nated Kairana and Deoband. His ri­val from RLD Rav Javed, on the other hand, is ac­cused of giv­ing a pro-Pak­istan speech in which he al­legedly said that the Mus­lim com­mu­nity is suf­fer­ing be­cause of cre­ation of Pak­istan; oth­er­wise, there would have been 50 crore more Mus­lims in In­dia and dis­trict mag­is­trates and po­lice chiefs would have been of their com­mu­nity. “Javed has been booked un­der more strin­gent sec­tions – like Sec­tion 153B – which in­volves mak­ing as­ser­tions prej­u­di­cial to na­tional in­te­gra­tion. His speech is sym­pa­thetic to­wards Pak­istan and meant to arouse com­mu­nal pas­sions,” an of­fi­cer at Than­ab­hawan po­lice sta­tion told ET on con­di­tion of anonymity.

Such po­lar­i­sa­tion and even stronger counter-po­lar­i­sa­tion is be­com­ing the dom­i­nant nar­ra­tive in western UP ahead of the first phase of polling on Fe­bru­ary 11. Rab­ble-rouser Lok Sabha mem­ber Yogi Adityanath, who has been dis­patched by the BJP to the re­gion, has claimed that 25 dis­tricts here face a Kairana-like ex­o­dus of Hin­dus. On the other hand, the BSP can­di­date in Meerut, Haji Yaqub Qureshi, has been ac­cused of mak­ing a speech in which he warned Mus­lims that the RSS would take away the right of vote of Mus­lims if BJP wins UP. This speech is also un­der the po­lice’s and Elec­tion Com­mis­sion’s radar, po­lice of­fi­cials in Meerut said.

All this comes be­fore the po­lit­i­cal heavy­weights land in western UP for cam­paign­ing this week. BSP chief Mayawati is sched­uled to ad­dress rallies at Meerut and Ali­garh on Wed­nes­day while Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi is due to ad­dress a rally at Meerut on Fe­bru­ary 4 and in Ali­garh on Fe­bru­ary 5.

The state BJP unit had pro­posed a Modi rally in the com­mu­nally-sen­si­tive Muzaffarnagar but the PM has opted for Meerut, where the party’s can­di­dates for as­sem­bly con­stituen­cies­fromMeerutandMuzaf­far­na­gar dis­tricts will be present. Yogi Adityanath is slated to speak in Muzaffarnagar,though.Homem­i­nis­ter Ra­j­nath Singh and BJP chief Amit Shah are also sched­uled to ad­dress five rallies apiece for the BJP in western UP start­ing Fe­bru­ary 6.

BJPmem­bers­saidthatwhile­po­lar­i­sa­tion was al­ways go­ing to be the strat­egy for the party in western UP, es­pe­cially since Jat lead­ers are not with­thep­artyas­they­w­ere­dur­ingthe 2014 Lok Sabha polls, there is a re­al­i­sa­tion that an “ex­cess po­lar­i­sa­tion dose” could trig­ger neg­a­tive ef­fects in the form of “counter-po­lar­i­sa­tion” from par­ties like the BSP and RLD, which could hurt. This seems to be hap­pen­ing,par­tic­u­larlyaftertheBJP man­i­festo spoke of strong mea­sures to check Kairana-like ex­o­dus and shut­ting down slaugh­ter­houses in the state, a ma­jor­ity of which are in western UP. Yogi Adityanath said in Ghazi­abad on Mon­day that western UP could turn into an­other Kash­mir if ex­o­dus is not checked. Union min­is­ter and Lok Sabha mem­ber from Muzaffarnagar, BJP’s Sanjeev Baliyan, who was in Meerut on Mon­day to over­see the PM’s up­com­ing rally prepa­ra­tions, also dwelt on these is­sues, say­ing “slaugh­ter­hous­esare­hurt­ing­farm­ers,re­duc­ing live­stock and also im­ping­ing on com­mu­nal har­mony”.

“We will make the state riot-free… a new in­quiry will be con­ducted re­gard­ing the 2013 Muzaffarnagar ri­ots and the mas­ter­minds will be iden­ti­fied,” said Baliyan, who is among those ac­cused for the ri­ots. BSP has given max­i­mum tick­ets to Mus­lims in western UP while the BJP has given none. Mean­while, it seems the Sa­ma­jwadi Par­tyCongress al­liance has yet to per­co­late to the ground level in western UP’s cru­cial MeerutandMuzaf­far­na­gar.

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