The sacked BSF jawan spoke to Moneycontrol about his decision to contest against PM Modi in Varanasi, his future course of action and what he feels about the prime minister
Terming it a "political conspiracy", sacked Border Security Force (BSF) jawan Tej Bahadur Yadav has blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for rejection of his nomination.
Yadav, son of a farmer, had filed his nomination to contest from the Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency in Uttar Pradesh. He had claimed that he would have defeated PM Modi if his nomination had not been rejected. He has now decided to campaign against PM Modi in Varanasi.
He spoke to Moneycontrol about why he decided to contest from Varanasi, his future course of action and what he feels about PM Modi.
“The Modi government has completely failed to deliver on its promises, from the welfare of Army personnel to farmers in India. He played politics in the name of the Army and came to power in 2014. Being an Army man, when I raised my voice against the poor quality of food being served to the troops, he let me get dismissed from my post. In five years, he has not taken any significant step in favour of the Army or farmers,” Yadav said.
Yadav also said the prime minister was talking about Balakot airstrikes but not about the attacks on jawans. “Why is Prime Minister Modi not ordering a probe into the Pulwama attack? I wanted to stand against him and ask him: if he really cares about the Army, he should answer my questions,” Yadav said.
Yadav had first filed his nomination as an Independent on April 24 and subsequently filed his nomination on April 29 to contest on Samajwadi Party (SP)’s symbol. SP had fielded Yadav as the Mahagathbandhan’s joint candidate. SP is contesting the 2019 Lok Sabha election in an alliance with Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD).
His nomination was rejected on May 1 over "discrepancies" in the two sets of papers submitted by him.
Blaming PM Modi and the BJP, Yadav said he was "targeted" as he represented the aspirations and angst of farmers and jawans. He also claimed that the prime minister was "afraid" of him as he was receiving people’s support.
“If I was contesting from Varanasi, I would have surely defeated Modi. I was getting support from everywhere. People of Varanasi are supporting me. While SP nominated me as its candidate, the Aam Aadmi Party was also extending its support to me. It was under a political conspiracy of PM Modi and the BJP, that my nomination was rejected,” Yadav claimed.
Referring to Yadav’s contest against the prime minister in Varanasi, Delhi Chief Minister and AAP National Convener Arvind Kejriwal had said in a tweet that there was "something in the soil of Haryana" as people from the state "like to challenge" Modi. Kejriwal had himself contested against PM Modi in the 2014 general election.
Yadav said he had come to Haryana to cast his vote in the sixth phase and would return to Varanasi to campaign for SP’s candidate Shalini Yadav. “I will also go to other Lok Sabha seats undergoing polling in the seventh phase,” he added.
Asked about the Supreme Court quashing his plea challenging the Election Commission's decision to reject his nomination, Yadav said he will move the Allahabad High Court after elections conclude.
Yadav had moved the top court challenging the decision of the Returning Officer (RO) to reject his nomination papers from Varanasi, saying it was intended to "give a walkover" to PM Modi.
His plea was rejected by a bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi.Lok Sabha polls: For the latest updates, analysis and opinions, click hereThe Great Diwali Discount!
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