6 Jun 2024

UP Ayodhya Faizabad Election 2024: Awadhesh Prasad attributes success to people of Ayodhya; what experts & locals have to say?

The Samajwadi Party has shown strong performance in Uttar Pradesh, securing the position as the third-largest party nationally with 37 out of 80 seats in UP.

However, certain election outcomes have left people astonished, particularly in constituencies like Faizabad in Uttar Pradesh. Ayodhya is situated within the Faizabad parliamentary constituency, where BJP conducted the consecration of the Shri Ram temple in January prior to the elections.

The Modi government had highlighted the construction of the Ram temple at the site of the Babri Masjid as a major achievement. However, in the Tuesday results, BJP lost this particular seat.

Lallu Singh, a two-time MP from Ayodhya, contested from BJP and was defeated by the veteran Samajwadi leader Awadhesh Prasad. The margin of defeat exceeded 50,000 votes.

Many view Awadhesh Prasad's victory as a response to BJP's Hindutva campaign.

Awadhesh Prasad emphasized that it was the people, not him, who were fighting against BJP. He mentioned receiving significant support from the Dalit community.

When asked by reporters about his views, he stated, "BJP aimed to claim credit for the construction of the Ram temple, which was built following the Supreme Court's directive. They sought to leverage the temple for political gains and divert attention from critical issues like unemployment, poverty, inflation, and farmers' concerns."

"I was not fighting against BJP, it was these people who were fighting against BJP. We got the biggest support from Dalit brothers who are the real victims of BJP's policies. Along with Dalits, OBCs and minorities also supported us. We also got the support of farmers and that support was beyond any caste. Farmers were troubled by stray animals."

What experts & locals said?

Political experts attribute several reasons for the defeat of BJP in Ayodhya. Many of them said that BJP focused the most on the development of Ayodhya Dham. From social media to election campaign, the development work done in Ayodhya Dham was publicized but BJP did not pay much attention to the rural areas of Ayodhya. Apart from Ayodhya Dham, the picture of rural areas was completely different. Due to this resentment, the villagers did not vote in favor of BJP.

Houses and shops were demolished during the construction of Rampath

Many locals said houses were demolished during the construction of Rampath, but compensation was not given. Land was acquired for the construction of Rampath in Ayodhya. Many people's houses and shops were demolished. The disappointing aspect was that many people did not get compensation. Its resentment is clearly visible in the election results. A similar situation was also seen in the widening of Chaurasi Kosi Parikrama Marg. A large number of houses and shops were demolished but the affected did not get proper compensation.

According to some observers, there was much resentment towards local candidate Lallu Singh. BJP had fielded MP Lallu Singh for the third time, expressing confidence in him. Not fielding a new face proved costly for BJP here. The party could not gauge the anger of the local people against Lallu Singh. As a result, BJP had to lose the prestigious seat. Lallu Singh had also given a statement of changing the Constitution during the election campaign. There was a lot of uproar over the statement.

Political disciple of Mulayam

Awadhesh Prasad comes from the Dalit community and has been one of the founding members of the Samajwadi Party. He has been given a seat next to Akhilesh Yadav in the Assembly. He is also counted as a senior member in the Assembly. It is said that along with having a strong hold on the Dalit vote bank, the equation of Yadav and Muslim voters was with him. This cocktail worked in this election and BJP's Lallu Singh lost in Ramnagari.

Awadhesh Prasad is said to be the political disciple of Mulayam Singh Yadav and was counted among the people closest to Mulayam Singh Yadav. He has been associated with the Samajwadi Party for a long time. He has been an MLA nine times and a minister in different governments.

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