Why did Amit Shah visit Deoband and what did the people there say on Hindu-Muslim politics?
Home Minister Amit Shah arrived on Saturday to campaign for the Deoband assembly seat in western Uttar Pradesh.
Amit Shah campaigned door-to-door in the Muslim voter-dominated Deoband constituency. Amit Shah could only stay here for 20 minutes due to the arrival of thousands of workers in the narrow streets. It is worth noting that in the last assembly
elections, the Deoband seat was won by the BJP after 21 years. Here BJP candidate Brijesh Kumar Singh and SP-RLD alliance candidate Kartikeya Rana are in the fray.
Shah first held a meeting with the workers in Muzaffarnagar and Saharanpur. BJP candidate from Deoband, Brijesh Singh said on this occasion – ‘People say that even if a finger is cut here, then one has to run to Saharanpur. Don’t know who gave you feedback. I got oxygen plants installed, a new Primary Health Center (PHC) is being built.
In fact, aside from the claims and publicity of the leaders, the ground reality of Deoband’s health department was confused. Let us tell you, there are 16 posts of doctors in this primary health center with paint, paint and good looking building from outside, but in reality the hospital I have only two doctors. This is a hospital on Deoband’s population of 3 lakhs where there is neither a surgeon nor a female doctor. Where there should be 16 doctors, work is being done with only two. On January 4, just before the elections, the foundation stone of the ATS center was laid in the city in a hurry. As of now its work has not started yet.
Once upon a time, Deoband was famous for its handloom and Gandase. Today the handloom is over, while this small scale industry is also in danger due to GST and electricity becoming expensive on the farmers who cut the fodder. Let us tell you, the Gandase made in Deoband goes to Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan. Mansoor Baig, owner of Gandasa factory, told
‘Now due to the introduction of GST, there has been an increase of Rs 15 on a Gandasa, so now people buy local only.’
Due to the high number of Muslim voters in the Darul Uloom Deoband madrasa and the assembly, there is a lot of politics in the name of Hindu Muslim politics and terrorism in recent times. But apart from the illusion of WhatsApp and social media, there has been neither any riot nor any other riot here over the years, which was confirmed by the dozens of people present there.
Ajay Singhal, a resident of Deoband, said – ‘This city is not like what people present to Deoband. Here there is Hindu-Muslim brotherhood, everyone celebrates Eid and Holi together. Deoband is in the city, but in the village you will not be able to know whether someone is a Hindu or a Muslim.
Kamal Deobandi told – ‘Despite being Muslim majority, Thakur candidates have been winning from this constituency and most of all it has been a stronghold of Congress. It is recognized because of being secular. As the election campaign intensifies, the leaders will try to deepen the issue of religion and caste so that political gains can be made.