Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had a meal at a Dalit household here on Friday and said during the Samajwadi Party rule it was "social exploitation" and not "social justice", whereas the BJP government was working for the development of every section of society without any discrimination.
Mr. Adityanath's visit to the Dalit family in Gorakhpur came a little before Swami Prasad Maurya, Dara Singh Chauhan and Dharam Singh Saini, who resigned from the government accusing it of being anti-Dalit, gathered at the Samajwadi Party office in Lucknow to take up its membership in the run-up to the assembly polls beginning February 10.
Several BJP and Apna Dal legislators have also quit their respective parties to join the SP.
After having meal at Amritlal Bharti's home on the occasion of Makar Sankranti, Mr. Adityanath told reporters, "Only 18,000 houses were given to people under PM Awas Yojna in full five-year term of the Akhilesh Yadav government in UP, whereas the present BJP government has given 45 lakh houses to the poor and the deprived under the scheme."
"It was 'samajik shoshan' (social exploitation) and not 'samajik nyay' (social justice) during the SP rule in UP," he said, taking a swipe at his predecessor and SP chief Akhilesh Yadav.
He said 2.61 crore households got toilets and 1.36 crore families benefitted from the Ujjwala Yojana under the "double engine" government, referring to the BJP rule at the Centre and in the State.
"Those in the grip of dynastic politics cannot give justice to any section of society," he added.
"The SP government had committed dacoity on the rights of Dalits and the poor," he said.
Mr. Yadav was the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh from 2012 to 2017.
Mr. Maurya, Mr. Chauhan and Mr. Saini as well as almost all rebel MLAs had cited the State government of not caring for the welfare of Dalits and the backward classes as prime reasons for leaving the saffron camp.
Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh will be held in seven phases beginning February 10 and the results will be announced on March 10.