UP Assembly Polls: Anurag Thakur was speaking at the Uttar Pradesh BJP headquarters. (File)
Union Minister Anurag Thakur on Sunday targeted the Samajwadi Party, saying that people indulging in riots go to Akhilesh Yadav's party, while those who catch the rioters join the BJP.
The BJP leader was speaking at the Uttar Pradesh BJP headquarters on the occasion of former IPS Asim Arun joining the saffron party.
Asserting that those with a clean image are coming to the BJP, he said, "Those who indulge in riots go to the Samajwadi Party, and those who catch the rioters, join the BJP".
"The real khel (game) of Samajwadi Party is that the candidate is either in jail or on bail," the Union Information and Broadcasting Minister said.
"If you see MLA Nahid Hasan (SP candidate from Kairana), he is SP's candidate number one. He is in jail. The second MLA is Abdullah Azam, who is on bail. If you see the list of SP candidates, it starts from the one in jail, and ends with the one on bail. The game of jail-bail is the real 'khel' (game) of the Samajwadi Party," Mr Thakur said.
On Asim Arun joining the BJP, the Union minister said, "This is clear before society that officials with clean image are coming to join the BJP, while those indulging in riots are in the SP." He also accused SP candidate Nahid Hasan of forcing people to undertake exodus (earlier from Kairana).
Sitting Samajwadi Party MLA from Kairana Assembly constituency Hasan on Friday became the first candidate to file his nomination papers for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls beginning next month The two-time SP MLA from Kairana constituency in Shamli district was on Saturday sent to 14-day judicial custody by a special court after being arrested by police, officials said.
Earlier, police had invoked the stringent Gangsters Act against Hasan.
Abdullah Azam, the son of senior Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan, was released from Sitapur jail on Saturday evening. Abdullah Azam and his father were lodged in Sitapur jail after they were shifted from Rampur jail on February 27, 2020.
At the BJP headquarters, UP BJP chief Swatantra Dev Singh, and Union minister Mr Thakur, who is also the party's election co-incharge, gave the party's membership to Asim Arun.
Swatantra Dev Singh lauded Asim Arun, and also his father Sriram Arun, the former DGP of Uttar Pradesh. Speaking to reporters, Asim Arun said, "The BJP has given me a chance to serve the people. The decision to opt for VRS was not an easy one. On the one hand, I had nine years of service still left in the police service, and there was an opportunity to climb to higher posts. On the other hand, there was an ordinary life, and a chance to serve the public."
"I think that Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) has a durlabh (rare) thought process, and the speciality of the BJP is to develop new leadership," he said, and also said that the past five years were good from the law and order point of view, and police personnel and officers got an excellent opportunity to work.
On January 10, the Uttar Pradesh government approved the voluntary retirement request of Kanpur Police Commissioner Asim Arun.
The senior IPS officer of the 1994 batch had applied for premature retirement amid speculation of his entry into active politics and contesting the assembly polls.
The 51-year-old Asim Arun was an additional director general of police (ADGP)-rank officer, who has previously helmed the state's Anti-Terrorist Squad, the 112 service besides leading the police force in districts like Aligarh, Gorakhpur and Agra.
During central deputation, Asim Arun served in the Core Protection Group of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's Special Protection Group (SPG).