Maintaining the spotlight on the issue of law and order, Union Minister for Home Affairs and senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Amit Shah on Friday hailed Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath-led UP government for "finished mafia from western parts of the state and Rohilkhand".
Addressing a public rally in Bareilly, Shah said, "Adityanath has finished mafia from western UP and Rohilkhand. There was a time when the UP police used to run away after seeing the mafia. Now mafia runs away after listening to the Police siren."
Shah took a swipe at the Samajwadi Party (SP)and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), saying that this change couldn't have been brought by them (SP-BSP) because they are bound by caste considerations to provide protection to the mafia.
"This change couldn't have been brought by SP-BSP because it's the compulsion of casteist parties to provide protection to the mafia. The BJP isn't casteist. The BJP works on Prime Minister Modi's mantra of 'sabka saath, sabka vikas'," he added.
He further attacked Opposition leaders and said the BJP is the only party which who puts the mafia behind the bars.
"There were three big names in Uttar Pradesh - one of them was Azam Khan. Tell me where is he today? The second was Ateeq Ahmad. Where is he now? The third was Mukhtar Ansari. Where is he today? Akhilesh is asking for votes, they are not going to get anything," he said.
Shah, however, warned that if SP came to power, then will "these -- Azam, Ateeq and Mukhtar -- three continue to be in jail? It is BJP alone which puts the mafia behind bars. No one else can do this," he added further.
The seven phased Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh commenced on February 10. The second phase of polling for the state Assembly is scheduled for February 14.
Altogether 55 assembly constituencies will go to the polls in the second phase covering nine districts of Saharanpur, Bijnor, Amroha, Sambhal, Moradabad, Rampur, Bareilly, Budaun and Shahjahanpur.