Amit Shah Urges Consolidation of Backward Caste Voters in UP

Uttar Pradesh got completely rid of the divisive forces

New Delhi/Lucknow: Making a strong pitch for the consolidation of backward caste voters in the state ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, Union home minister Amit Shah on Sunday said that Uttar Pradesh got completely rid of the divisive forces of the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party after the BJP and the Apna Dal (Sonelal) joined hands.

Addressing a function in Lucknow to mark the birth anniversary of late Kurmi (a backward caste) leader Sonelal Patel, the father of Union minister Anupriya Patel, Mr Shah highlighted the success of the BJP and the Apna Dal (S) alliance and targeted the Congress, BSP and SP.

Mr Shah claimed that the maximum number of MPs belonging to the OBCs, SCs and STs were from the National Democratic Alliance and listed steps taken by the Narendra Modi government for the upliftment of these communities.

"Sonelal Patel made efforts to usher in happiness in the lives of the poor people from different sections by uniting them. He went to jail and even faced torture, but he did not leave the path of struggle undertaken for the backward people. It is a matter of happiness that the path shown by Sonelal Patel has been taken forward by sister Anupriya ji in continuing to work for the backward people," he said.

Mr Shah noted that in UP, the BJP and Apna Dal (S) have contested four elections together -- two Lok Sabha polls (2014 and 2019) and two Assembly elections (2017 and 2022) -- and have unitedly won them.

"As a result, UP has gotten completely rid of the divisive forces of the SP and the BSP," the Union home minister said.

In his address, Mr Shah noted that a number of measures have been taken in the last nine years of the Modi government to bring about a change in the lives of the poor, especially the backward community.

"After Independence, it was the first council of ministers of the BJP and NDA, in which 27 ministers were from the backward community. The maximum number of MPs from the OBC, SC and ST elected in any alliance was in the NDA. The Congress, SP and BSP were either in power or partners in power, but they never worked to give constitutional status to the backward class commission," he said.

Mr Shah further stated: "They never formed commissions like the one for the Dalit brothers or for the tribal ('adivasi') brothers. Modi ji worked to give constitutional status to the OBC Commission, by which the path of development of the backward class was laid."

He mentioned that the law and order situation in Uttar Pradesh has improved under the leadership of chief minister Yogi Adityanath and the state is attracting industrial investment.

"The schemes meant for the poor, which were sent by Modi ji, are being implemented by the UP administration," the Union home minister said.

Appealing to the Apna Dal (S) workers, Mr Shah said that they have to once again make the Apna Dal (S), BJP and Nishad party win all the seats in UP in the upcoming 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Addressing the gathering, Ms Patel said that Mr Shah had played an important role in their alliance.

"The BJP-Apna Dal (S) together have contested four elections since 2014 and it is an old alliance. Mr Shah played the most important role in this. You gave us affection, respect and guidance," Ms Patel said.

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