New Delhi, Nov 15: BJP today termed Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati's decision to divide the state into four parts as a “political stunt” before the Assembly elections and indicated that one of these states will have a Muslim majority which could lead to “Kashmir-like” problems.
BJP leader Uma Bharti said this decision was “completely a political stunt” and Mayawati had consulted other political parties to form a consensus on the issue before making the announcement.
“She has made this announcement just before the elections and acted unmindful of the sentiments of the local people,” Bharti, who is in charge of the party's affairs in Uttar Pradesh, said.
Ideologically, BJP has always been in favour of smaller states and had formed Uttaranchal, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh in 2000 when the NDA was in power at the Centre. It also supports the demand for Telangana.
However, BJP is concerned that carving out a separate state from Western UP may go against it as it will have a Muslim majority and the party is not likely to win seats here. Though no leader spoke on this aspect of the issue, the party gave indications to this effect.
“Before forming a new state the opinion of the local people should be taken, the demographic profile of the new state should be kept in mind, geographical concerns should be addressed and logistical issues should be looked into,” Bharti said.
BJP leaders cite the example of Kashmir where the Muslims are in a minority and “have forced the Kashmiri pandits to flee from the state”. Some in the party feel Paschim Pradesh may witness a similar scenario with Hindus at the receiving end.
Bharti said Mayawati's announcement today has been made keeping the forthcoming Assembly elections in mind.
“The States Reorganisation Commission has not been formed and the Centre was not apprised of this move before the announcement. So, before the states are formed the elections will be over,” Bharti said.
BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar alleged that Mayawati had taken this decision “without discussing, debating or examining” the issue during four and a half years of her rule.
“All of a sudden this announcement has been made before the elections. Her government has been issuing advertisements making claims about work which has actually not been done (on the ground). Also, after allowing all sections to target Brahmins in the state, she is saying they are under attack,” Javadekar said.
He levelled charges against the Congress too on this issue, saying it has failed to form Telangana, a demand which has been pending for so many years.
“We do not know if the Congress has supported Mayawati's decision. They have not accepted the demand for Telangana. At the moment, BJP is fighting for Telangana. States are not made in this manner (as announced by Mayawati),” Javadekar said.
Asked which way the BJP will vote if the issue comes up in the UP Assembly, the party was evasive.
“But Mayawati knows this will not be implemented now and so this is a political stunt. It has not come to the Vidhan Sabha yet. We will decide which way to vote and also express our views on this issue in the Assembly when the issue comes up,” Javadekar said.