Jaipur: The elections in Rajasthan are far away but it seems that issues have started shaping up. The issues like Karauli riots and Eastern Rajasthan Canal Project (ERCP) are making headlines in the state. Both Congress and Bjp are trying to keep these issues alive for a long time as the war of words and agitations on are continue from both sides.
The ruling Congress is betting on ERCP as water is a core issue for a parched state like Rajsthan. 13 districts of eastern Rajasthan with a population of 3 crores will get benefit from the project.
What is interesting is that the project is the brainchild of the former Bjp government that had made the detailed project report and sent it to the Central government to declare it a national project around 5 years ago.
Still, the Congress government is pushing it as the MPs of the Bjp and the central government have not done anything significant to declare it a national project. Even though the union Jalshakti minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat is from Rajasthan.
Gehlot waited for two years\ and from his 3rd budget he started talking about this and now as the elections are coming closer he has started attacking Bjp MPs and the central government aggressively. The party staged Dharna on the issue in 13 districts on Wednesday.
‘There is no politics in this. This is your project and we want to complete it. There is anger in 13 districts and can become a big issue for Bjp in these districts. Minister should convey this to PM,’ advised Ashok Gehlot while talking to media on Thursday.
‘ it’s a win-win situation for Congress as the way in which Gehlot is pushing the ERCP, the credit will go to him even if the central government fulfil the demand and if the central government refuse the demand it will become a big election issue in Eastern Rajasthan where Bjp is already not in a strong situation,’ said a Congress leader on anonymity.
On the other hand, Bjp is cashing on Karauli riots and the orders of imposition of section 144 CrPC in around 17 districts on festivals. The party is accusing the government of appeasement politics. The leaders of the party are visiting Karauli and had tried to make it a national issue with a press conference n Delhi and a visit of MP Tejsvi Surya.
The Bjp is also accusing the government of making a social balance in arresting the culprits of the violence. Deputy leader of the party in assembly Rajendra Rathore said ‘ the FIR lodged by the police is self-explanatory that who were the culprits behind this, still the police is trying to make a social balance in arrests and the main accused the councillor of the area is still absconding.’
Besides this, the imposition of prohibitory orders under Section 144 in 17 districts on festivals had also become an issue for Bjp to accuse the Gehlot government of doing appeasement politics. Former CM Vasundhara Raje clearly states that the Congress government is putting restrictions on Hindu festivals and this is not acceptable.
The statements of Bjp leaders indicate that they are not in the mood to drop the issue easily and it will become an election issue.