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Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday launched a strong attack on the “appeasement politics” of former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav, saying the Samajwadi Party only had the ‘JAM’ of Jinnah, Azam Khan and Mukhtar Ansari on offer for Uttar Pradesh.

Shah was in Azamgarh with Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to lay the foundation stone of a state university, the Home Minister said would be named after OBC icon Raja Suhel Dev, a move seen as an answer to Akhilesh Yadav joining hands with Om Prakash Rajbhar’s party which is named after Raja Suhel Dev.

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“Azamgarh was known under the Samajwadi Party rule as a terror sanctuary and for fundamentalist thinking. This was made the den of anti-national activity. But today, a Maa Saraswati Dham (university) is being set up here which will change the image of Azamgarh,” Shah said, referring to terrorism cases where suspected cadres of the Indian Mujahideen were traced back to Azamgarh.

“We are offering the JAM of Jandhan bank accounts, Aadhaar and Mobile. The SP is offering JAM of Jinnah, Azam Khan and Mukhtar. You decide which JAM you want — BJP’s or SP’s. As elections near, Akhilesh Yadav is finding greatness in Jinnah. Some people from the minority community are also sitting here… tell me is there any person who finds any good in Jinnah?” Shah asked at the rally which saw good attendance.

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Shah praised CM Yogi Adityanath saying he had rid the state of the scourge of casteism, appeasement and mafia. “Mafia has left the state for good. That has been the biggest work done by Yogi Adityanath. UP is now the country’s second biggest economy,” Shah said.

Azamgarh district remains a tough challenge for the BJP. In the last Assembly elections, the BJP lost nine out of the 10 assembly seats here despite the NDA winning 325 out of the 403 Assembly seats in the state. The SP won five seats then in Azamgarh, while the BSP won four. In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, Mulayam Singh Yadav won the Azamgarh Lok Sabha seat, while in 2019, the seat was won by Akhilesh Yadav with a big margin and by polling 60% of the total votes.

“We don’t win seats from Azamgarh. I have tried to make people here understand in 2014, 2017 and 2019. This time I appeal to you — enough is enough, this time vote for change and make the BJP win all the seats from Azamgarh,” Shah appealed.

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Yogi Adityanath in his speech said Azamgarh had given two CMs in Mulayam Singh Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav to Uttar Pradesh but they were also responsible for destroying Azamgarh’s image.

Amit Shah also gave the clarion call under Yogi’s leadership for 300-plus seats as an aim for the BJP in Uttar Pradesh. “The SP, BSP and Congress kept on asking us about the date on which Ram Mandir in Ayodhya will be built. Now, we are building a grand Ram Temple in Ayodhya at the same spot and PM Modi has done the Bhoomi Pujan. PM Modi has fulfilled that aspiration of millions of people. We have also removed Article 370 from Jammu & Kashmir after people gave us a second term,” Shah said.

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