UP BJP to launch ‘Modi Mitras’ campaign to woo Muslimstext_fields
Lucknow: As part of the attempts to woo the Muslim community unwilling to come close to the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP), the party is now launching a new campaign under which it will make an effort to convince Muslims to become 'Modi Mitra' (friends of PM Narendra Modi).
This ambitious pre-poll campaign is aimed at mobilising the minority community in the run-up to the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
The campaign, proposed to be carried out by the state BJP Minority Morcha after Eid, will cover 29 Lok Sabha seats of UP - including the 14 constituencies which the saffron party could not win in the 2019 parliamentary elections. Party has selected 65 Muslim-dominated Lok Sabha seats where the Muslim population is more than 30 per cent.
“We are commencing a Muslim engagement programme ‘Modi Mitra’ post-April 20 till February 2024. For this, we have identified 65 Lok Sabha seats across the country, where the Muslim population is more than 30 per cent. Under this outreach campaign, our target is those Muslims who do not belong to any political party and are impressed with PM Modi’s schemes,” said BJP Minority Morcha President Jamal Siddiqui.
The other 15 seats, including Moradabad, Bijnor, Saharanpur, Muzaffarnagar, Amroha, Balrampur, Ghazipur, Bareilly, Rampur, Azamgarh, Baghpat and Meerut, would be those which have a sizable population of Muslim voters. This will also include Rampur and Azamgarh, which the BJP otherwise won in the bypolls held last year.
UP BJP Minority Morcha chief Kunwar Basit Ali said that the campaign is being initiated as part of the 'Mahasampark Abhiyan' (mass contact campaign), the month-long campaign, signifying the completion of nine-year rule of the BJP at the Centre under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Starting from door-to-door campaigns to the use of social media, small seminars, advertising campaigns etc, the party will showcase the Modi government’s welfare works for the Muslim community.
The minority front will reach out to the influential class amongst Muslims to make them 'Modi Mitras', so that the message and policies of the BJP government get delivered amongst the minorities in a better way. BJP is planning to reach out to people from all walks of life be it doctors, engineers, social workers, journalists and professors.
Sources said that the Morcha plans to highlight how the various welfare schemes initiated under the leadership of Modi benefitted the minorities.
Ali said that nearly 4.5 crore Muslims benefited from the various schemes including PM Awas Yojana, construction of toilets under Swachh Bharat Mission and free gas cylinders under Ujjwala Yojana.
Moreover, he said, around 2 crore Muslim population benefited from the free ration scheme which was initiated at the time of the pandemic.
He said that the Morcha would also exhort the beneficiaries from the Muslim community to send letters to Modi expressing their 'gratitude' to the government.
The Morcha also plans to take the Yoga Day programmes scheduled on June 21 to the madrasas and communities practising 'Sufism'.
Ali said that the Morcha would seek to establish a dialogue with the Sufis to shore up support for the BJP.
Out of these 65 Muslim-majority Lok Sabha seats, 13 each from Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal have been included. Five seats are from Jammu and Kashmir, four from Bihar, six each from Kerala and Assam, three from Madhya Pradesh, two each from Telangana and Haryana and one seat each from Maharashtra and Lakshadweep.
In these seats, Siddiqui said along with the BJP, the ‘Rashtriya Muslim Manch’ associated with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh is having ‘dialogues and contacts’ with the Muslims.
The BJP has been reaching out to the Muslim community as part of its deft attempt to blunt opposition aggression, essentially the Akhilesh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party which has been positioning itself against the BJP.