Twenty years on, the 2002 Gujarat riots continue to play a role in the upcoming parliamentary elections, both in the candidates and the issues in contention – or in the absence.
While the BJP has reiterated the MLA serving on the committee that recommended the early release of convicts in the Bilkis Bano gang rape and murder case, the outcry beyond that has found little resonance on the ground.
The BJP has also summoned the daughter of a convict in the Naroda Patiya massacre – which killed more than 90 people on 28 February 2002 – with the only leader of the party to be tried for the violence present to witness of the nomination.
“That dirty water… But as a resident of Morbi, I dared to jump in (Machchu river). There were four to five police officers, they also jumped. Then came the Muslim boys, others… When Saheb (Prime Minister Narendra Modi) called, I didn’t even have my phone with me. But only one percent of the rescue work was done by me while the rest 99 percent was done by 99 others and yet they gave credit to me…Then I came back and uploaded a video…I have so much wisdom’, says Kantilal Amrutiya in the same breath emphasizes his role in the rescue work in the Machchu River in Morbi after the collapse of the bridge there on October 30 that killed 135 people, including 55 children.
Footage of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi recently putting his arm around activist Medha Patkar’s shoulders as his Bharat Jodo Yatra traverses Maharashtra sparked a political storm in Gujarat on Friday.
When the BJP launched its mega-campaign deploying national and state leaders in 89 constituencies going to the polls on December 1, the party jumped at every opportunity to attack Rahul for associating with Patkar. -Gujarat and anti-Gujaratis”.
Vyara constituency, located in the Tapi district of southern Gujarat, has a unique position: it sends the only Christian MLA to the state assembly, which has been winning since 2007. the first time it has done so in the state in 20 years.
The Scheduled Tribes Reserved Constituency has been a Congress stronghold since 1998, with the party re-handling its old MLA Punabhai Gamit.
In the upcoming Gujarat Assembly elections, almost half of the total number of voters is under 40 years of age. However, the share of new voters in this group is declining, continuing a trend that started 10 years ago. According to the latest enrollment data shared by the Election Commission, out of 4.9 crore voters enrolled, nearly 2.35 crore are under 40. Of these, the first voters are 11.74 lakh which is less as compared to the voters in the 18-19 age group. in the 2012 and 2017 polls.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi targeted Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday for walking with Narmada Bachao Andolan activist Medha Patkar during the Bharat Jodo Yatra. “A congress leader was seen knocking out a padyatra with a woman who has delayed the Narmada dam project for three decades,” Modi said at a rally in Dhoraji in the state where the polls were to be conducted. Earlier in the day, the prime minister offered prayers at the Somnath Temple.
In Gir Somnath district, he appealed to the people for the ruling BJP to prevail in all voting booths, PTI news agency reported. Speaking at a rally in the town of Veraval after praying at the famous Somnath temple nearby, the prime minister also urged people to turn out in large numbers on election day, breaking all previous turnout records. “I want you to make sure the BJP wins every polling booth here. Will you do it for me? This time my focus is to win in all the voting booths. If you help me do that, these four BJP candidates will automatically make it to the Assembly” said Modi.
With the perception that the Congress campaign is not taking off in Gujarat and that the Aam Aadmi party is way ahead in the optical and narrative game, Rahul Gandhi will address two rallies in Gujarat next week – his first such political involvement since the Bharat Jodo Yatra began on September 7. Rahul will address two rallies – one in Surat and the other in Rajkot – on November 21. The Bharat Jodo Yatra has a day of rest on November 21 and November 22.