BJP raising funds for polls on pretext of Ram temple construction: Rajbhar

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Ballia/Lucknow (UP), Feb 10 (PTI) Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party president Om Prakash Rajbhar has accused the BJP of collecting money for the next Uttar Pradesh assembly elections on the pretext of raising funds for the Ram Temple construction in Ayodhya.

Rajbhar did not substantiate his allegation, which the BJP dismissed as “absurd”.

'Several donations up to Rs 100 crore each for the construction of the Ram temple has been made. How much of it will be spent in the construction of the temple? The BJP is collecting donations for the next assembly polls in the name of temple construction. A scam of Rs 1,400 crore has been done in the name of Ram temple,' Rajbhar told reporters on Tuesday.

Asked about the SBSP leader’s allegation, BJP spokesperson Rakesh Tripathi told PTI, “Rajhbar is known for making absurd statements. It is only to find space in media.” “His statements will not be supported even by the community which he claims to represent. All Hindus and non-Hindus are contributing for the Ram temple construction, and by terming it a scam, he should not hurt sentiments,' Tripathi added.

A former ally of the BJP in Uttar Pradesh and a Cabinet minister in the Yogi Adityanath government earlier, Rajbhar also accused the state government of doing communal politics by its treatment to gangsters-turned-politicians from different communities.

Questioning the action taken against BSP MLA Mukhtar Ansari and former MP Atiq Ahmad, Rajbhar said the state government is playing 'Hindu-Muslim' politics.

He claimed there are 15 cases against Ansari, but gangster-turned-politician Brijesh Singh has 105 cases lodged against him with Dhananjay Singh and Abhay Singh having over 100 cases each against them.

“Why no action is being taken against them? Why is the government taking actions only against Ansaris and Ahmads?' Rajbhar asked.

Countering Rajbhar's allegation, BJP spokesperson Tripathi accused him of allying with those who judge criminals by their caste and religion.

“The Adityanath government does judge criminals by their caste and religion and initiates strict action irrespective of criminals’ religion and background,' Tripathi said.

On his party’s alliance with AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi, Rajbhar said, 'For the BJP having Muslim leaders like Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Shahnawaz Hussain is fine. But when I allied with Owaisi, they say I am going to offer namaz,' he said.

Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi turning emotional during his farewell speech for Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday, he said Modi gets sentimental on his relations with Azad, but the BJP plays communal politics. PTI CORR ABN RAX RAX RAX