Lok Sabha battle will be tough for BJP: Balyan on SP-BSP alliance
By  IANS | Updated:  Jan 23, 2019, 09:15 AM
Former Union Minister Sanjeev Balyan admitted on Tuesday that the 2019 Lok Sabha polls will be a tough battle for the BJP, specially in Uttar Pradesh after the formation of the SP-BSP alliance.
"There is no harm in admitting that it is going to be a tough battle after the mahgatbandhan of SP (Samajwadi Party) and BSP (Bahujan Samaj Party)," the Bharatiya Janata Party MP told IANS.
Balyan, one of the leaders accused of inciting the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots, said that when some political parties unite, there is an obvious reaction.
"There is reaction for every action. There is no doubt that a big section of the society doesn't vote us. Be it on religious grounds or something else," he said.
In 2013, months ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, communal violence led to at least 62 deaths and left more than 50,000 displaced.
Many political observers feel that the BJP won 71 of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh in 2014 due to communal polarization that started with Muzaffarnagar.
Balyan, a first time Lok Sabha member, had defeated BSP's Kadir Rana by over 4 lakh votes in 2014. Rana had won the seat in 2009.
In 2009 the seat was represented by SP's Munawwar Hasan while Congress' Saiduzaman won the seat in 1999. From 1991 to 1998, the seat was represented by BJP.
Balyan was appointed a Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing in the Modi government in 2014.
In 2016 he was shifted to Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation and in the next reshuffle he was dropped from the Ministry.
Balyan said that when the BJP won in 2014, the expectations of the people were very high and people still feel that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has done a lot.
"The positivity about Modiji is still there among people. It has not dimmed. We will fight the election on the achievements of the government," he said.
He said when he was elected in 2014, there was no negativity against him or the BJP as he was a first timer and the Congress was in power at the Centre and the Samajwadi Party in Lucknow.
"Now, when I seek a second term, there will obviously be some dissent among people. Because you can't satisfy everyone. But the good thing is that we have Modiji. We will go to masses on his work. My own hard work will obviously be there," he said.
We welcome your comments at [email protected]