Yogi hurries to implement BJP election manifesto

Yogi hurries to implement BJP election manifesto

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath seems to be in a tearing hurry to implement the BJP’s ‘Lok Sankalp Patra’, the election manifesto which contained the party’s priorities if it came to power.

From acting against “illegal’’ abattoirs and acting tough on cow smuggling to cracking down on roadside Romeos and banning betel-chewing and ‘gutkha’ in offices, Adityanath has shaken up the bureaucracy in the three days he has been in power.

Some of his decision though have raised eyebrows and triggered protests. The new chief minister also directed a review of the security granted by the previous government to ‘important’ people without valid reasons.

Dozens of young men have been rounded up in different parts of the state in the past two days by “anti-Romeo squads’’ after they were found loitering around places frequented by girls, triggering vigilantism concerns.

The apprehensions followed reports that police personnel had also rounded up young couples in Jhansi and some other places. There were reports that the police made the couples do sit-ups before being let off. But officials here denied any kind of ill-treatment.

According to reports, dozens of youths were detained in Adityanath’s native town Gorakhpur, state capital Lucknow, Meerut, Noida and Ghaziabad. The BJP had in its manifesto promised to set up anti-Romeo squads to deal with eve-teasing.

State government spokesman Siddharth Nath Singh said these squads would be set up at the police-station level. “Our objective is not to harass young boys. We want to ensure the safety of girls and take those who pass lewd comments to task. Their parents will also be taken into confidence and asked to ensure that their sons mend their ways,” said a senior police official.

But some others disagree with the approach. ''There is always a risk in such things. It’s akin to moral policing. The cops often turn vigilantes and harass couples,'' said a postgraduate student here. The government has also cracked down on ''illegal'' slaughterhouses in the state and so far around 50 abattoirs and hundreds of meat shops have been sealed.

“The priority of the state government is to close the illegal slaughter houses in the state, and at the same time put a blanket ban on all the mechanised slaughter houses," PTI quoted chief secretary Rahul Bhatnagar as saying.

Sources said some slaughterhouses sealed in Meerut belonged to former UP minister and senior Bahujan Samaj Party leader Haji Yaqoob Qureshi and former MP Shahid Akhlaq.

Local people staged a demonstration when authorities sealed an ''illegal'' slaughterhouse in Kanpur’s Bajaria locality on Wednesday, sources said. Tension prevailed in Hathras town, about 400 kilometres from here, after unidentified miscreants set ablaze three meat shop late on Tuesday night, the police said.

Adityanath has also ordered tough action on cow smuggling and directed officials to prepare a plan of action to implement a ban on it. 

He asked officials not to delay movement of files without a valid reason and dispose them of within the stipulated period.

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