In Rahul Gandhi’s Turf Amethi, Amit Shah Leads Big BJP Show Today

The BJP, which rules both at the Centre and in UP, is signaling that it is falsely accused by Rahul Gandhi of "step-motherly treatment" to Amethi because it has voted for the Congress vice-president.

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In Rahul Gandhi?s Turf Amethi, Amit Shah Leads Big BJP Show Today

BJP chief Amit Shah will inaugurate a number of schemes during his Amethi visit. (File pic)


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Highlights

  1. Local Congress leader has joined BJP ahead of Amit Shah's Amethi visit
  2. Jang Bahadur Singh accused Mr Gandhi of neglecting development of Amethi
  3. Amethi has been considered Congress safe seat for decades
BJP chief Amit Shah will on Tuesday visit Uttar Pradesh's Amethi accompanied by union minister Smriti Irani and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. Apart from addressing a big rally, they will inaugurate or lay the foundation for 21 new development projects in Amethi, which is the parliamentary constituency of Rahul Gandhi.

The BJP, which rules both at the Centre and in UP, is signaling that it is falsely accused by Rahul Gandhi of "step-motherly treatment" to Amethi because it has voted for the Congress vice-president. To stress the point, a senior local leader of the Congress, Jang Bahadur Singh, joined the BJP on Monday, just a day ahead of the party chief's visit, accusing Mr Gandhi of neglecting the development of Amethi, his constituency for the past 13 years.

"I have decided to join the BJP. The projects which were started earlier have slowed down significantly, thereby generating a sense of agony. However, with the advent of Smriti Irani there has been a visible shift," said Jang Bahadur Singh who was a BSP legislator from Gauriganj, one of the assembly segments in Amethi, from 2003-07 before joining the Samajwadi Party and then the Congress.

Smriti Irani, who is the union minister for textiles and information and broadcasting, had fought the 2014 national election against Mr Gandhi in Amethi, considered a Congress safe seat for decades, and though she lost, she considerably reduced his margin of victory. Since then, she has visited Amethi often, interacting with people and pointing that she is in the constituency more often than its MP, who visited last week after six months.
 
rahul gandhi in amethi twitter

Rahul Gandhi visited Amethi last week after six months.

"Along with the former MLA of Amethi, around 60-70 members of the Congress have left the party and have joined the BJP. Their anguish was that Rahul Gandhi has failed to bring development in the area all these years. To add to this, the insult and ignorance of the Congress made them leave the party," Ms Irani said.

Amethi was one of only two parliament seats of UP's 80 that the Congress could win in 2014; the other was neighbouring Rae Bareli, also a Gandhi family stronghold, from where Congress chief and Rahul Gandhi's mother Sonia Gandhi contested and won. The BJP had won 71 seats and hopes to wrest the two Congress seats too in the next national election in 2019, encouraged by its win of six of the 10 assembly seats in Amethi and Rae Bareli in state elections earlier this year. In Amethi, the BJP won four of five assembly seats.

On his visit to Amethi last week - prompted by a need, alleged the BJP, to register his presence before Amit Shah's big visit - Rahul Gandhi accused the BJP governments at the Centre and in UP of rehashing and launching anew projects in Amethi already begun by the previous Congress-led government.

He targeted PM Modi over employment, asking him to create job opportunities instead of "wasting time" and also accused the BJP of shutting down a key food park project in Amethi started by his party, which he claims would have changed the fortunes of the district.


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