Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav today took a swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for "running away from holding press conference" on a day the PM arrived at Varanasi to hold a massive roadshow ahead of filing his election papers.
"Vikas wants to know, have you also heard anything new? Heard that the people have changed the name of BJP to Bhaagti Janata Party because the Prime Minister keeps running away from press conferences, their leaders keep running away from questions by reporters and their party workers avoid meeting the public because people are asking when would they get jobs or the promised Rs 15 lakh," Akhilesh Yadav tweeted, replacing "Bharatiya" with "Bhaagti", meaning to run away.
Vikas (development) is a recurring theme in PM Modi's speeches and a major thrust of his campaign in this year's national election as well as in the past. The opposition often points at the "Rs 15 lakh" question in reference to speeches by the Prime Minister, then a BJP candidate from Varanasi, in the run-up to the Lok Sabha election in 2014.
Akhilesh Yadav in another tweet attacked the BJP over PM Modi's overnight move to scrap high-value notes in November 2016, which the opposition claims hurt the economy and broke the back of the cash-dependent informal sector.
"Vikas wants to know if you know this child Pradhan Sb? His name's Khazanchi. He was born in a bank during notebandi (demonetisation). Now he wants to vote out the party who caused his mother pain. But we said you're too young and just because you were wronged doesn't mean you wrong others," tweeted Mr Yadav, whose Samajwadi Party is fighting the election in alliance with Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party in the state that sends the highest number of parliamentarians to the Lok Sabha. The Congress is not part of the alliance.
Vikas wants to know if you know this child Pradhan Sb?- Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) April 25, 2019
His name's #Khazanchi. He was born in a bank during notebandi. Now he wants to vote out the party who caused his mother pain. But we said you're too young and just because you were wronged doesn't mean you wrong others! pic.twitter.com/Kirg9XxHKP
The former Uttar Pradesh chief minister's comments came a day after the BJP clarified that PM Modi won't hold any press conference in Varanasi. The Congress today fielded Ajay Rai from this seat; he's the same candidate who fought from this seat in 2014 and came third after PM Modi and Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal. It also ended any speculation about Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra contesting from this major pilgrimage town by the Ganga in Uttar Pradesh.
The BJP on Wednesday had said a fake letter was doing the rounds on social media about the Prime Minister's plan to hold a press conference in Varanasi.
Varanasi will vote on May 19 in the seventh phase of the Lok Sabha election. Results will be out on May 23.
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