UP polls: From singing patriotic songs to frying 'puris', candidates leaving no stone unturned to woo voters : The Tribune India

UP polls: From singing patriotic songs to frying 'puris', candidates leaving no stone unturned to woo voters

Unusual means of connecting with electorate are being adopted by ministers

UP polls: From singing patriotic songs to frying 'puris', candidates leaving no stone unturned to woo voters

Photo for representational purpose only.



PTI

Lucknow, February 13

From singing songs to frying “puris” and making emotional appeals, the candidates fielded by various political parties in the Uttar Pradesh polls are making every effort to woo the voters.

Unusual means of connecting with the electorate are also being adopted by ministers in the Yogi Adityanath government, who are doing their bit to reach out to the voters.

If senior minister Suresh Khanna is singing songs invoking patriotism in Shahjahanpur, another minister Brijesh Pathak is frying puris at a roadside kiosk.

The Congress nominee from the Mohammdabad Gohna seat in Mau, Banwari Lal, is making a desperate appeal to the voters to either give him votes or a “kafan” (shroud).

Seeking re-election from the Shahjahanpur seat for the ninth time, a video clip of Khanna singing a song at an election meeting went viral on social media platforms recently.

The BJP leader was heard singing his version of poet Pradeep’s “hum layen hain toofan se kashti nikal ke, mere desh ko rakhna mere bachho sambhal ke”, scripted for the 1954 film “Jagriti” and sung by Mohammed Rafi.

Khanna’s lyrical appeal, in line with his party’s campaign to keep Uttar Pradesh safe from the vices of crime, terrorism, casteism, regionalism and dynasticism is—“is kshetra ko rakhna mere mitron sambhal ke, hum laye hai apradh se Uttar Pradesh nikaal ke...atankvad, kshetravad, jatiwad ko, humne kiya parast pariwarvad ko...behka na de vikas se koi dhoke me daal ke...is kshetra ko rakhna mere mitron sambhal ke. Tumhi bhavishya ho mere Uttar Pradesh vishal ke....”

Chairman of the Zila Sahkari Bank in Shahjahanpur and BJP leader DPS Rathore said Khanna had made such appearances on different party platforms earlier as well.

“The song that he is singing during campaigning is a patriotic song and he has only expressed his patriotism and concerns through it,” Rathore said.

Law Minister Pathak caught eyeballs when he took to the busy streets of the state capital with his supporters for a door-to-door campaign and fried puris at a roadside kiosk in Narhi Bazar.

He also tried his hands at a sewing machine at the “Ladle Tailor” shop.

Though Pathak said it was nothing new as he had been moving about in the area for the last five years, his presence at the roadside kiosk and the tailoring shop generated interest among the locals who were also applied “tilak” by the minister.

“I had gone to take the blessings of people, including the beneficiaries of various government schemes, by applying tilak,” said Pathak, who is the MLA from Lucknow Central but has been fielded by the BJP from another high profile seat, Lucknow Cantonment, in the ongoing polls.

Banwari Lal, the Congress nominee from Mohammdabad Gohna, is out to strike an emotional chord with the voters, making a desperate call for “votes or a kafan”.

The 65-year-old Congress leader is distributing a handout titled “vote ya kafan” with an appeal for support for what he terms as his last election, reminding the voters that he has been among them for the last 30 years.

The appeal mentions how he lost his son and wife and the financial losses that forced him to sell his house.

“Main Banwari bechara, mera antim prayas,” says the handout with Lal’s picture with folded hands.

“I lost four elections with a slender margin in the past. This is my last election as no party will field me in the future. I have spoken about all that I have lost and have also appealed to the members of every section of the society to vote for me or else, give me a kafan,” the Congress leader said.

In Kaushambi district’s Sirathu, the Assembly constituency of Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya who is busy campaigning for the BJP candidates all over the state, a drama group has arrived from Delhi and is visiting villages enacting skits.

Several leaders, busy with road-shows and door-to-door campaigns, have obliged the voters by getting selfies clicked with them or garlanding children in the laps of their parents.

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi, who has been leading her party’s campaign in Uttar Pradesh, has been seen entering agricultural fields, talking to the women working there and explaining to them about her party’s resolve and climbing atop a sugarcane-laden tractor to talk to the driver.

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