Ra­j­nath Con­fi­dent of BJP Win­ning Ma­jor­ity in UP

Terms SP-Cong al­liance a tie-up of the weak; in­sists poll no ref­er­en­dum on de­mon­eti­sa­tion

The Economic Times - - Front Page - Rav­ish.Ti­wari @times­group.com

New Delhi: BJP is on course to win­ning an ab­so­lute ma­jor­ity in Ut­tar Pradesh, Union home min­is­ter Ra­j­nath Singh told ET in an in­ter­view, rub­bish­ing in­cum­bent Sa­ma­jwadi Party’s claims of de­vel­op­ment dur­ing its term and char­ac­ter­is­ing the SP-Congress tie-up as an al­liance of two weak par­ties dic­tated by their lust for power.

Singh said BJP is the only party uni­formly in con­test in every as­sem­bly seg­ment in the state, where it faces the SP-Congress al­liance in some places and Bahu­jan Sa­maj Party in oth­ers. Dis­miss­ing charges of BJP seek­ing to po­larise the elec­torate or be­ing anti-reser­va­tion, he said the party al­ways works for in­clu­sive pol­i­tics.

A for­mer chief min­is­ter of UP who cur­rently rep­re­sents Luc­know in the Lok Sabha, Singh said the fact that SP needed an al­liance with Congress it­self sug­gests the party has weak­ened.

Why did it take Chief Min­is­ter Akhilesh Ya­dav four and a half years to as­sert him­self, Singh asked, re­spond­ing to a ques­tion on whether BJP is wor­ried over the re­cent im­age makeover of the CM fol­low­ing the fam­ily feud. “Peo­ple have lost faith in SP,” he said.

The seven-phase elec­tion kicks off on Fe­bru­ary 11 and votes will be counted on March 11.

Singh said when BJP’s op­po­nents in UP claim that the party is yet to ful­fil its 2014 prom­ise of ‘achhe din (good days)’, they ac­tu­ally mean that is the case in the state. “Pradesh sarkar ne gra­han laga diya hai (The state gov­ern­ment has caused an eclipse), which is why they can’t see it,” he said.

Rul­ing out cam­paign­ing for his first-time con­tes­tant son Pankaj Singh in Noida on grounds of pro­pri­ety, the home min­is­ter said peo­ple know Pankaj al­ready as he has been a party worker for the past 14-15 years.

Singh, while claim­ing the gov­ern­ment’s de­mon­eti­sa­tion drive has been uni­ver­sally wel­comed, said no elec­tion can be a ref­er­en­dum on a sin­gle is­sue.

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