BJP on alert as Akhilesh plays 'Krishna' card

BJP on alert as Akhilesh plays 'Krishna' card

Former Uttar Pradesh chief minister and Samajwadi Party (SP) supremo Akhilesh Yadav's reported plans to get a statue of Lord Krishna  installed at his ancestral village of Saifai, has sent alarm bells ringing in the BJP.

Akhilesh plans to unveil the statue at a grand function in the presence of Opposition leaders ahead of the next Lok Sabha election in 2019

A cautious state BJP leadership chose not to react to the plans beyond saying that Akhilesh was ''only following'' the saffron party, which too had plans for construction of a temple of Lord Rama on the banks of the holy Saryu river in Ayodhya.

''It is good that Akhilesh has decided to follow us,'' said a senior UP BJP leader while speaking to DH here.

According to the reports, the 51-feet high Lord Krishna statue, weighing around 60 tonnes, was currently being constructed inside a school at Saifai in UP's Etawah district, about 300 km from here.

Reports said that the statue depicts Lord Krishna standing with the wheel of a chariot in his hand.

Local SP leaders said that the statue, funded by the Saifai Mahotsav Committee, was almost complete and would be ready for unveiling in the next few months.

SP sources said that Akhilesh would unveil the statue sometime next year at a grand function in which leaders of several Opposition parties would take part.

BJP in quandary

Though Akhilesh denied any ''political motive'' behind the statue plan, SP leaders here said that the party desperately wanted to get rid of the ''anti-Hindu'' and ''pro-Muslim'' tag.

''Akhilesh will make every effort to bring the non-Yadav OBCs to his fold in the next Lok Sabha polls....he wants to send a message that he is not against the Hindus,'' said a senior SP leader here.

The move, however, has put the BJP in a quandary as the saffron party would not like to attack Akhilesh on this issue fearing a backlash in the Hindu community.

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