Uttar Pradesh 2012 polls Wooing The Masses Maya makes surprise reality checks; Mulayam launches ‘unmask government’s misdeeds’ campaign.
Battle royal for the 2012 elections in India’s most populous state—Uttar Pradesh—has begun. Though different political parties are doing the election campaigning in their own way, their aim is same—wooing the masses. The neglected, sidelined, common man is getting the regal treat. The masses in general and the minority in particular are being wooed relentensely by the political parties. And if we see which politician is better at this game of showmanship, then Uttar Pradesh state Chief Minister and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati appears to be scoring over her political rivals. Her surprise visits for the physical assessment of development work being done in the state have re-started just before the elections. This is an old-trusted technique that Mayawati used previously with great success. It has always helped create terror in the hearts of the officers and a soft corner in the hearts of comman man for her.
True to her nature and in her typically harsh, vociferous style, Mayawati after each inspection comes down heavily on the non-performers by identifying them in these random surprise visits in the districts. While like always she cut the non-performers to pieces by her tongue lashing and heavy dressing down, many were even handed over suspension letters, and some got adverse entries in their service record books, and many were transferred. It had an immediate impact on the masses who had earlier been at the mercy of these same officers. But on the flipside it was again the common man who suffered again. Mayawati’s surprise visits left the traffic, wherever she went, in utter chaos. People were stranded for hours on the road as traffic was stopped for the VVIP cavalcade to pass.
MULAYAM, SON UNDER ‘HOUSE ARREST’
Just a day before the party stir, the Samajwadi Party spokesperson Rajendra Chaudhary told reporters in the state capital that the party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son, party state president Akhilesh Yadav, were put under house arrest. He alleged that this was done at the behest of the ruling party Chief Minsiter Ms Mayawati.
Addressing a press conference at the party headquarters in Lucknow Chaudhury said that deployment of heavy police force was to thawt the party workers from their agitation which would “unmask the misdeeds of BSP”.
Close on the heels of mass wooing came Mulayam Singh’s Samajwadi Party’s tirade against Mayawati regime. Though still embroiled with differences within the party, nursing the wounds inflicted by the former national secretary general Amar Singh who quit the party last year, BSP’s arch-rival Samajwadi Party did not want to be left behind. In a well thought-out strategy, the party launched its three-day ‘unmask government’s misdeeds’ campaign all over the state from March 7, 2011. Heavy police bandobast was done all over the state. Special arrangements were made in the state capital. Vikramaditay Marg, where the residence of SP supremo and party office of the SP are situated, witnessed deployment of heavy contingent of police. The party alleged that its senior leaders, including Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav and son MP Akhilesh Yadav had been virtually put under house arrest. On the third day Akhilesh was arrested.
All roads and by-lanes near Vikramaditya Marg were cordened off. The common man, including school children, especially those having their examinations had to face great difficulties in commuting and had to take long detours.
Overzealous police officials put an Etawah bridegroom Ravi Kumar and his two dozen men inside the lock-up suspecting them to be SP workers from Etawah. Police officer in charge TT Singh alleged that the men were SP activists in garb of bridegroom and his friends. It was the SDM of Bharthana police station, Ajay Awasthi, who granted bail to the groom and four others, whereas the others in the party had to stay in lock-up.
The SP protesters launched its counter-police agitations and manged to lock the entrances of a several government offices.Women party workers were seen in large numbers in these agittaions.
What Mayawati did in the form of whirlwind tours for reality checks and what Mulayam and his party members did can be termed as duty of a ruling and opposition parties respectively. They illustrated that they had the thought of the welfare of the masses and that is why they did what they did. But why did such public welfare thoughts not come to their mind earlier? Why did they all become pro-active just when the elections are round the corner?
By Kulsum mustafa from Lucknow