Listen to the government, Bajrang Dal is not BJP, says Shah

New Delhi, May 27 (IANS) Downplaying a controversy over the Bajrang Dal’s “self-defence training camps” in Uttar Pradesh, BJP president Amit Shah on Friday said his party’s focus in next year’s state assembly polls would be on development and the activities of such Hindu outfits could not be equated with the BJP.

“Listen to the government, what it is saying. Everything will be right,” Shah said at a press conference here in reply to a question that while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders were focusing on development, right-wing outfits like the Bajrang Dal were playing “divisive” politics.

The BJP president also wondered on what basis the opposition was accusing the BJP of playing the communal card ahead of the assembly elections in the state.

“I don’t know on what basis they are saying this… Bajrang Dal is not BJP,” he said.

On the Bajrang Dal’s self-defence training camps in Uttar Pradesh, Shah said the state government should take action against it if there is anything unlawful.

Shah also responded to questions related to its core issues like construction of the Ram temple at Ayodhya, common civil code and Article 370.

“These issues are mentioned in our manifesto and it is also mentioned there that how we intend to work on these issues,” he said.

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) has been constantly raising the issue of construction of a Ram temple at Ayodhya.

On assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh next year, Shah claimed the BJP will form the next government in the state.

“The party will take a call whether to declare a chief ministerial candidate or not,” he said, adding that “UP ka Ram kaun hoga ye waha ki janata tay kar legi (the people will decide who UP’s Ram will be).”

The question on who would be the party’s ‘Ram’ in Uttar Pradesh came in the wake of an appeal made by Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Saharanpur to elect the BJP.

“Fourteen years of our exile from UP are coming to an end. I appeal to the people of the state to end our exile and help us form our government. Even Lord Rama’s exile had ended after 14 years,” Rajnath had said.

Shah also said the BJP is considering alliances with smaller parties and that the ruling Samajwadi Party will be its main rival in Uttar Pradesh.

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