In a breaking development, Punjab Congress minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, taking the lines of BSP supremo Mayawati, has appealed the Muslims to vote in unison in order to oust the Modi government.
While addressing a rally in Bihar's Purnia, Navjot Singh Sidhu also targeted Asaduddin Owaisi for seeking Muslim votes, after which he called out the '64 per cent Muslim population' in the region to vote to remove the government-led by PM Modi.
"Muslim brother, people like Owaisi want to win by dividing the Muslim vote here. 64% is your (Muslim) population is in majority here and if you will get together and cast your votes, then Modi will be finished," said Sidhu in a public rally in Purnia on Tuesday.
Polarising speeches, seeking votes on religious terms, has emerged significantly during the election campaigning for 2019 Lok Sabha polls, with top leaders like BSP supremo Mayawati. Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath, SP leader Azam Khan and Union Minister Maneka Gandhi coming under the radar of the Election Commission.
Taking cognisance of the divisive speeches made by multiple political leaders, the Election Commission on Tuesday imposed bans on their election campaigning amid the poll season.
The poll body issued notices to Mayawati imposing 48-hour prohibition and Yogi Adityanath imposing 72-hours ban on their election campaigns starting from Tuesday, as a part of their punishment over speeches on communal terms.
On April 7, Mayawati on Sunday gave a polarising speech where she appealed to Muslim voters to vote for the BSP-SP coalition (with RLD in tow) and not Congress saying that the party led by Gandhis cannot fight the BJP, while addressing a rally in Deoband in Saharanpur.
"I want to tell the Muslim community to not let their votes divide. I ask you to vote together for BSP, SP and RLD."
Later, while delivering a poll speech in Meerut which goes to polls on April 11, UP CM Yogi Adityanath accused the Congress and Gathbandhan of targeting the Muslim community as a vote-bank. He then used a controversial remark he has made once before:
"If they believe in Ali, we also believe in Bajrangbali."
EC also issued a notice to Union Minister Maneka Gandhi over her polarising speech, imposing a 2-day ban. Gandhi was speaking on Thursday in her rally when she made the despicable statement:
"I am winning for sure but if I win without the support of Muslims then I would feel really bad and when Muslims come to me for work then I feel there is no point of helping them as after all giving employment is a give-and-take and it is not that we are like Mahatma Gandhi as we continue to help them but don't win in the elections. Spread this message everywhere."