Amit Shah’s masterclass, river yatras, social media outreach: How BJP is wooing UP ahead of Assembly polls in 2022

The home minister will visit Varanasi today during which he will interact with nearly 700 leaders and review the preparations for the polls, scheduled for early next year

File photo of BJP supporters waving party flags. AFP

It is the ‘baap’ of all state elections and it appears that the Bharatiya Janata Party isn’t leaving anything to chance when it comes to winning the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls.

From planning a mega social media outreach to Home Minister Amit Shah holding a masterclass in Varanasi today, to holding ‘tiffin meetings’ with the Muslim population, the BJP is trying to do it all to retain power in the populous state.

Here’s a look at the major plans the saffron party is undertaking to win the electoral hearts of the people in Uttar Pradesh.

Amit Shah’s Varanasi masterclass

Union Home Minister Amit Shah will be visiting Varanasi on Friday during which he will hold an ‘election meet’ with nearly 700 leaders and will review the preparations for the Assembly polls, scheduled for early next year.

News18 reported that all 98 district presidents, along with the in-charges of all 403 Assembly seats, the six regional presidents of the party in UP, all senior functionaries have been called for the meet on Friday.

The Friday meeting chaired by Amit Shah will continue for the entire day, following which Amit Shah will be going to Akhilesh Yadav’s constituency Azamgarh on 13 November for a rally.

To display the significance of the meet and also create a buzz in the state, the party has put up over 1,000 hoardings in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency.

During his Varanasi stay, Shah will also take part in the All India Rajsabha Sammelan.

BJP blitzkrieg

A number of BJP leaders are scheduled to visit the state in coming days to either address rallies or inaugurate events.

Starting off, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to be in Sultanpur on 16 November to inaugurate the Purvanchal Expressway. The 340-kilometre-long expressway will connect eastern and western parts of the state.

Built at a cost of Rs 42,000 crore, the expressway starts from Chand Sarai village in Lucknow and passes through Lucknow, Barabanki, Amethi, Ayodhya, Sultanpur, Ambedkar Nagar, Azamgarh, Mau and Ghazipur. It is expected to not only reduce the travel time between parts of Uttar Pradesh and Delhi, but also cut the travel time between Delhi and Bihar.

Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami will also visit Lucknow on 17 November. He is expected to address a gathering of Uttarakhand people in Lucknow the next day.

On 19 November, Prime Minister Modi and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh are likely to visit Jhansi on the 193rd birth anniversary of Rani Laxmibai. The prime minister would also launch piped water and some defence-related projects and on 20 November, Amit Shah will chair a conference of state police chiefs in Lucknow.

River yatra

The saffron party has also planned ‘river yatras’ in an attempt to woo the Nishad community.

According to a Deccan Herald report, the yatras, named as ‘Kamal Nauka Yatra’, have members of fishermen and boatmen communities travelling by the BJP boats, talking about the party’s initiatives for the community that is politically dominant along the banks of the Ganga and the Yamuna.

In total, five such river journeys are scheduled. Notably, two out of five river journeys have already commenced, one each in Prayagraj and Kanpur across the Ganga ghats.

There are plans for three more on the Kachla river in Budaun, across the Ganga in Varanasi and in Garh Mukteshwar in western UP.

State BJP general secretary Ashwini Tyagi was quoted as saying that these yatras aim at connecting with the “community that earns its living from the rivers”.

Muslim outreach

The BJP is also making a conscious effort to win over a section of the minority vote in the politically-charged state.

The BJP’s plan is to send out around 44,000 members to speak to Muslim families and make them aware of the welfare work carried out by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Yogi Adityanath in the state.

The BJP is also considering giving tickets to Muslim candidates for the upcoming polls. This fact should be noted as, during the 2017 elections, the party had not given a single ticket to any Muslim candidate.

Social media dive

The BJP’s social media team is also campaigning for a return to power. As per reported information, BJP video vans are rolling out to UP villages from 11 November and they will display 30-minute-long films highlighting the achievements of the Yogi Adityanath government.

Moreover, cartoons and aggressive messaging will be rolled out on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Catchy songs will sing Adityanath’s tunes to counter the Opposition, ensuring that their voice and presence remains the loudest and the strongest.

As the BJP leaves no stone unturned, one thing is certain that the UP Assembly polls will be a firecracker of an election and will grab the most headlines and eyeballs.

With inputs from agencies

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