Delhi polls: BJP’s potent mix of Ayodhya, CAA

Delhi polls: BJP’s potent mix of Ayodhya, Citizenship Act

Union Home Minister and senior BJP leader Amit Shah flashes victory sign during an election campaign roadshow for Delhi Assembly elections, at Ghonda in east Delhi, on Sunday. PTI

Up against an upbeat Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, the BJP is relying on the over-month long Shaheen Bagh protests, the Modi government’s “decisive action” in Jammu and Kashmir and building a Ram temple in Ayodhya to see it through in the upcoming Assembly elections in Delhi.

Home Minister Amit Shah has been carrying out roadshows by the day and addressing rallies in the evening to whip up support for the BJP in an election that appears heavily tilted towards Kejriwal-led AAP.

On Sunday, the thrust of Shah’s campaign was to ask voters to send a message to ‘Shaheen Bagh’ protesters, who had links with those fomenting riots.

The BJP also appeared to make all-out attempts to link AAP with the controversial activist Sharjeel Imam, who was booked for sedition for making inflammatory speeches at Shaheen Bagh against the CAA.

On the CAA, Shah accused Rahul Gandhi, Kejriwal of speaking Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s language.

In his nearly 30-minute speech, Shah credited Modi’s return to power with a larger majority than 2014 for the Supreme Court decision to clear the path for Ram temple in Ayodhya.

“When the case came before the Supreme Court this time… Modi had won a complete majority… friends, all the five judges decided that a temple will be built on the same place where Lord Ram was born,” Shah said.

Shah said Congress and AAP hesitated in supporting Ram temple and action against ‘tukde-tukde gang’ because they were concerned about their vote bank. “Are you their vote bank,” Shah asked the crowd which roared a resounding ‘No’.

“Then who is their vote bank,” he asked.

“Shaheen Bagh,” the gathering responded, prompting Shah to repeat the question thrice.

Shah urged the gathering to vote for the BJP in the February 8 elections. “Press the button so hard, that its impact is visible in Shaheen Bagh,” the home minister said.