Congress should explain why Rahul is not fighting from Amethi; it is their cowardice: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Mohan Yadav

Mr. Yadav says the BJP’s strength lies in its collective leadership and that Congress leaders have no ideology

Published - May 11, 2024 11:48 pm IST - Ujjain

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Mohan Yadav is leading the BJP campaign in his State.

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Mohan Yadav is leading the BJP campaign in his State. | Photo Credit: The Hindu

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Mohan Yadav, who is leading the BJP campaign in the State in the first election since becoming the CM, says that Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s decision to not contest from Amethi shows “his cowardice”.

Mr. Yadav, in an apparent attack on the Samajwadi Party, asks how a party, which has had Chief Ministers, Ministers, MLAs and MPs from one family, can speak about an entire community. The Chief Minister says that when he visits neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, he takes forward the message that someone who does not hail from the majority caste group in a State can also become a Chief Minister.

Edited excerpts:

Is this the first big test for Mohan Yadav?

See, we have collective leadership in our party. The success of a film does not only depend on the hero-heroine but also upon the director, musician and others. How the film is, the timing of its release, all these factors matter. I might be seen on the driving seat but our party, our organisation and ideology work so deeply that I find my job easier.

You are also going to other States, especially Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. Can we say that the BJP has found its poster boy for the Yadav community?

If you have listened to Modiji’s speeches, he has said there are only four castes [the poor, the youth, women and farmers]. So, it is wrong to say that I am going across the country only because I am a Yadav. But yes, I come from a farmer’s family and poor family, so our journey began from the very bottom. And if I have become the CM of a State with a population of 8.5 crore, it is a matter of pride that my party has made me the CM without asking about the caste. Even in my Assembly constituency (Ujjain-Dakshin), my caste group is not in the majority. So, we have made a statement that a person not from the majority community and someone who does not have an MP, Minister or Chief Minister in their family can also become an MLA. Modiji himself is an example of this as nobody from his family held any posts like Prime Minister or Chief Minister. And there are many such examples.

But, Yadavs in Uttar Pradesh have long been associated with the Samajwadi Party. What are you offering them when you go there?

If Chief Ministers, Ministers, MLAs and MPs come from one family, then how can they talk about the community? I am an example in front of them. I am not criticising anybody but I will share the good things about the BJP. Modiji himself has said that our BJP gives a chance to everyone, like how ‘Mohan Yadavji is working in Madhya Pradesh’. So, should this example be shared or not? This is a moment that makes the democracy proud.

You also visited Amethi and attended Smriti Irani’s roadshow. Rahul Gandhi, however, has chosen to contest Rae Bareli and no Gandhi family member will contest Amethi. Comments?

The Congress should explain why he (Rahul Gandhi) is not fighting (from Amethi). I only think that it is their cowardice. This can also be seen from the perspective that he has entered politics as part of an inheritance. The lineage of emperors is gone but what is the message that this family wants to give? His uncle (Sanjay Gandhi) contested Amethi, his father became the PM after contesting the seat. So, first he destroyed his father’s seat and now he is destroying his mother’s (Sonia Gandhi) seat.

You have also talked about the recent statements by Mani Shankar Aiyar and Sam Pitroda.

These are really unfortunate statements. We are saying that they (Congress leaders) are zero in terms of ideology. Their roots are not in this country. They are seen in India but their roots are in Pakistan and America. Now the elections are being fought in India but they are talking about American laws. What can be more unfortunate than getting a certificate of being a good politician from Pakistan, an enemy nation that has harmed the people of India at every step? What should I comment on such a person? People of India know that the Congress is slowly finishing.

In Madhya Pradesh, one major issue is that the youth are angry over the state of government job recruitments, exam cancellations and paper leaks. They are also angry about how the patwari (revenue department staff) exam issue was dealt with.

We initiated an inquiry by a retired judge of the High Court as soon as questions were raised on the patwari recruitment process. When he proved it (the process) fair, the more than 9,000 selected candidates demanded that they be given jobs. So, we gave all appointments in one day. Is it wrong to fill the vacancies? There is no anger. We are giving jobs. Apart from this, we are continuously filling vacancies. The youth is happy about it. I have personally discussed the issues with many of them. Earlier what used to happen was that those selected (for jobs) through the PSC (State Public Service Commission) would not get appointments for two years due to various formalities like police verification and all. We changed this system to ensure that not a single day of the candidate goes wasted. So, the youth is not angry.

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