‘I Want Yogi To Return As CM, And Here Is Why…’

Pratham Raj, 19, a college student and a first time voter in Uttar Pradesh, recounts the reasons why he will cast his vote in favour of Yogi Aditynath

I am excited to be able to vote for the first time as the assembly elections date draws near. For a state as big as Uttar Pradesh, we all need to take our votes seriously. Even though I don’t follow news religiously, you cannot call me unaware. I am a socio-politically aware youngster even if I don’t understand the nitty gritty of politics very deeply.

I would be delighted to see chief minister Yogi Adityanath return to power for a second term. I have been happy with his tenure from 2017-2022. And I believe Yogi ji and the BJP will go from strength to strength in the next five years or so.

For me, the highlights of his tenure are the bhoomi poojan at Ram Mandir in Ayodhya and also the Kashi Vishwanath corridor project. As a Hindu, I feel very happy that my identity is being respected. People might say what they want but Yogi Adityanath has done many things for the state, be it handling Covid well, bringing the crime rates down and an overall lessening of the dabangai attitude. Most importantly, he has taken good care of the education of the youth.

Raj is appreciative of the decicisiveness of CM Yogi (right)

I study in a government college in UP and when even in normal times the education at government colleges would not be up to the mark, I am satisfied that even in these difficult times my education at government college is going well. Government employees have begun to take their work more seriously, because the CM takes his work seriously.

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During Covid, the government did a great job with supplying timely rations to the poor and the needy. No matter which community people belong to, they should appreciate a good job when they see it, irrespective of the party. I agree with what Yogi Adityanath said about this election being an 80-20 fight. Many still do not appreciate even a bona fide project like the Swacch Bharat Abhiyan in the state by Yogi just because he carries his Hindu identity on his sleeve.

When I grow up I want to take an active part in politics. I like the decisiveness with which Yogi Adityanath handles matters. His relatively young age also means he understands the requirements and aspirations of the youth. He is a balanced leader in my understanding and the Hindutva factor totally works for me. I am looking forward to see what more Yogi Adityanath can do in the next 5 years.

‘Yogi Has Done Good Work In UP, But Polarised Society Too’

Shubham Singh, 31, IT professional, says the pandemic has shown us how important it is to choose the right leader for one’s constituency

I have voted in every election, ever since I turned 18. I always make sure to take a good, hard look at the work and profile of the candidates in the contest. In the coming Uttar Pradesh elections, I feel the Ram Mandir verdict isn’t going to play a very important role. For, that issue is over and done with; now the voters are looking at everyday issues. The focus is back on poverty alleviation, education, infrastructure development etc.

I have been working in Delhi since 2014, but I return to my home state UP every time I am supposed to vote. However, for the past two years, like most people, I have been working from home. And in these two years I have had a better understanding of the ‘state’ of affairs around me.

As someone who has lived in Delhi, I can see that the communal tension does raise its head many times. And I have noticed the BJP government has been doing some good infrastructure development work on roads and bridges, Rapid Metro Project, Ganga Expressway Project etc. Personally I am happy about the work done on the Delhi-Moradabad Highway on NH-24. Indeed, if there is one state that has benefitted from what the BJP says “double engine ki Sarkar” then it is Uttar Pradesh.

Singh feels the youth must ask questions from their elected leaders

Having said that, we cannot ignore the fact that the groundwork for these were laid by the Samajwadi Party government. Marketing matters a lot during elections. Most people only remember the work done in the last one or two years of a party’s tenure, whereas the public should scrutinise all five years, the choice of candidates etc.

All around me, I see youngsters becoming focussed on entertainment (making short video reels for social media is their favourite pastime). They have forgotten to ask the right questions to leaders, say for example the dissatisfactory employment opportunities in the state.

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Communal polarisation triggered by the BJP is a sticky point for me. But I also feel that the Muslim community needs to be more confident rather than giving in to victim mentality and not being able to see any good work done by the BJP. For example, the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is a good initiative, yet many people find it hard to praise it.

People need to show exemplary analytical skills in these elections because as the pandemic has shown us, choosing a good local leader plays a very important role in handling a calamity. One should vote as an individual, not as a Hindu or Muslim. Sarv Dharm Sambhav is an important aspect of our lives here in UP. And seriously every reasonable person has begun to feel that the Hindu-Muslim narrative has begun to get a little too much.

Still If I had to choose between Yogi Adityanath and Akhilesh Yadav, I would go with Yogi Adityanath. The crime rate has come down, government machinery has picked up pace. If anti-social elements are scared, so are certain police officials who cross the line.

As about Asaduddin Owaisi and his party AIMIM, I believe it is BJP’s B-Party and is here just for cutting the vote base. Outside candidates don’t have a good understanding of local issues and neither are they able to build a strong connection with the natives. A case in point is Mohammad Azharuddin who contested the Lok Sabha elections in 2009 from Moradabad, won, and made few appearances afterwards. A local leader should be given more importance, at least he/she can be held accountable by the public. Now Azharuddin is busy with Telengana.

Being rooted is very important for a politician. The youth is aware, but all youngsters need to step up on their rights and duties if we want to see a flourishing political atmosphere where everyone’s issues are well-represented and solved.

Comm

My Vote – ‘Modi Bhai Acts Strongly’

Surya, 25, a pani-poori vendor in Morena town, Madhya Pradesh, believes that the country needs a leader of Narendra Modi’s stature if it has to stay on course toward a developed nation

I belong to a small village in Bharatpur, Rajasthan. There were few work opportunities for a youth there. About seven-eight years back, I migrated to Gujarat where my elder brother was working. The difference between the two states was a revelation to me. During my stay in Gujarat, I learned a lot about the value of education and technology. If you want a vendor permit or a shop licence there, you do not need to pay the touts; it can be done with the help of a computer. The facilities were readily available and affordable, be it water, electricity, roads, transport or housing.

Two years ago, after I lost my job in Gujarat, I shifted to Morena (Madhya Pradesh). MP is no match to Gujarat in terms of prosperity but it is way ahead of Rajasthan. Government administration and police are not lethargic as they are in Rajasthan. It is therefore a pity that I cannot vote here this time since I am registered as a voter in native Bharatpur.

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Yet, if I were allowed to vote, I will support the BJP. This is because of the tallest leader of our times, Narendra Modi. Before one talks about development, you should see it from your own eyes in Gujarat. And this was made possible, most of my Gujarati friends swear, under Narendra Modi. Gujarati bhai bole meetha, kaam kare ghana (Gujaratis speak softly but act with great resilience). Their self-belief can be contagious.

Till about a few years ago, I could not bear the thought of setting a street side rehri (push cart) and sell gol-gappas but I learned the value of entrepreneurship in Gujarat. No work is big or small. It is your attitude to the vocation that makes it respectable. Today, I find it more fulfilling to have my own humble setup than having to work as a labour for others.

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The personality of Narendra Modi is set in true Gujarati cast. I have unflinching belief in him. From what I see in TV channels every day, our country is on way to become a great power. Give Modi ji five more years, and I am sure there will be electricity and water in all the villages; better rural road connectivity; more jobs and prosperity in each states.

Yes, communal tension is an issue. Even here, whenever a BJP rally is held, many of my Muslim friends who own street vends like me, choose to stay indoors. This is not a good thing. Every poor man must have the right to earn and run his business without fear. However, it always takes two to start a fight. If Hindus are to blame for communal tension, Muslims are equally to blame. And the bigger blame must rest with the Police force, which is entrusted to ensure law and order. Media is also to blame which fans flames.

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