Uttar Pradesh: BJP planning to field candidates in minority-dominated wards in civic polls | Lucknow News indiabusinessport.com

LUCKNOW: In what could mark a paradigm change in its poll strategy, the BJP plans to field Muslim candidates in the urban local bodies (ULB) elections scheduled in UP by the year-end.
Highly placed sources in the BJP said the party has identified around 1,200 minority dominated wards — straddling across 17 municipal corporations, 199 nagar palika parishad (NPP) and 438 nagar panchayats (NP) — where Muslim candidates may to be fielded. In 2017 ULB polls, UP had total 11,995 wards — 1,300 in municipal corporations, 5,261 in NPP and 5,454 in NP.
“The narrative about BJP will certainly undergo a change as Muslim candidates may be fielded from some wards. BJP now transcends across all castes and communities,” UP BJP minority wing chief Kunwar Basit Ali told TOI. UP BJP chief Bhupendra Chaudhary had also hinted at fielding Muslim candidates in ULBs during a party meeting in Muzaffarnagar recently.

The move to field Muslims, though applying on a small number of wards (10% of the total wards as against 19% voting population of Muslims), could set out a contrasting feature about BJP which has been desisting from fielding Muslims in any direct elections since 2014 Lok Sabha polls. The party had not fielded any Muslim candidate in 2017 ULB elections as well.
In fact, BJP, which claims to be the ‘biggest political party in the world’, does not have a single Muslim MP in either Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha since July 7 this year, when the tenure of then minority affairs minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi ended in the upper house. BJP does not have a single Muslim MLA in 31 states and Union Territories.

While the BJP is yet to announce the names of the minority dominated wards where it will field Muslims, sources said most of the wards are situated in Rampur, Azamgarh, Meerut, Agra, Muzaffarnagar, Bareilly, Agra, Bijnor and Saharanpur.
BJP’s plan to field Muslims in ULB polls gained much pertinence months after it won byelections in Azamgarh and Rampur — the two districts having a sizeable population of Muslims. Though the party did not field any Muslim in the two bypolls, the win has well positioned the saffron outfit in the minority dominated districts.

Despite its Hinduistic image, BJP has been making concerted attempts to woo the Muslim community. In July, PM Narendra Modi had given a call for elevating the social status of Pasmanda (backward) Muslims through effective execution of public welfare schemes. A host of schemes, including free ration, rolled out during the Coronavirus pandemic, is learnt to have benefited the socially downtrodden sections among the Muslims. Experts said the BJP might also seek to use the ULB polls as a testing ground for assessing voting patterns of the Muslim community which has been consolidating steadfastly behind the Samajwadi Party.

Source link

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: