Caste, religion and politics responsible for UP’s dismal condition: Priyanka Gandhi

On Saturday, Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra blamed caste and religion politics for the ‘dismal’ situation in Uttar Pradesh and said non-Congress governments had done nothing else only big development demands.

The Congress leader also hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying how he could remain ignorant of the raging threat of stray cattle facing farmers in the state.

“UP could have progressed but there are only advertisements for which BJP spends millions of rupees. CM, PM are all BJP but nothing is here in the name of development, why such situation has- she emerged, and her direct response is that for 30 years it has been politics in the name of caste and religion,” Priyanka said at an election rally in Paniyara.

She said Bahujan Samaj Party, Samajwadi Party and BJP could only form governments by “exploiting the emotions” of the people on caste and religion, and therefore the state has no not seen any development.

“For such a state of affairs, you are all equally at fault because you have become accustomed (leaders) to not needing to work. You will vote turning a blind eye to emotional problems even if your children remain unemployed”, Priyanka said while addressing voters.

Attacking BJP leaders, she said, “They come here and talk about Pakistan, terrorism, caste and religion, but no one talks about you.
Referring to the threat of stray cattle, she said that although she had written to Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath suggesting that the Chhattisgarh model could be implemented to address the problem, he did not respond.

The Chhattisgarh model involves the government buying cow dung from the people, enabling them to deal with stray cattle and solve the problem.

“Last week the Prime Minister came to campaign and said from the stage that he was unaware of the stray livestock problem which has been going on for five years. You are the Prime Minister… people say that you are ‘antaryami, sarvgyani’ you get to know everything… people are afraid that if they say something from their room you will get to know and yet you were unaware of such a big problem,” she said, taking a nudge from Modi.

“Who gave the himmat (courage) to the PM and CM that they say from the ‘manch’ (dais) that they don’t know what your biggest problem is… you gave that courage when they stand here and talk about Hindu-Muslim, divide into caste, ‘aur nayya paar ho jayegi’ (and they cross the shore),” she claimed.

She sought to know from the people why there were votes for governments that spoke only of religion and caste. “Don’t vote for them,” Priyanka said.

“If you work hard for your son to be educated and give him everything he wants without him working for it, he turns out to be ‘nikamma’ (useless)… you have turned leaders into something similar. They have nothing to do… the chief has turned into a nikamma, useless for you,” she said, blaming the people of Uttar Pradesh for what she called the wrong governance and underdevelopment.

Taking a dig at the BJP Center and state governments for initiating a slew of projects in the recent past, Priyanka sought to find out why they were launched as the elections approached.

“At election time, inaugurations and foundation stones were laid, airports were built, but in the last five years they have been sold to friends. The policies are made for the big industrialists in the country today, not for the poor and the middle class. All the projects are for PM friends and not for the people,” she said without taking a name.

Minnie J. Leonard