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Farmers, SP to oppose Modi’s UP visit; local outfit to fly black kites

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Ballia: After Samajwadi Party, a group of farmers and a local outfit on Friday said they will oppose Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the district on May 1.

The farmers alleged that their crops have been damaged due to preparations for the visit in Maldepur adjacent to the Lucknow-Ballia National Highway where the Prime Minister is scheduled to launch Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana to provide LPG connections to women below poverty line.

Agitated farmers on Thursday staged a protest demanding compensation for damage to crops. They were joined by Puvanchal Peoples Party (PPP), a local outfit, which announced that they will too oppose Modi’s visit. Gram Pradhan Vinod Paswan alleged that without the consent of land owners, works were carried out on the land and crops were damaged.

They alleged that during Lok Sabha elections, Modi’s public meeting was held at the same place and farmers were promised compensation, which has not yet been fulfilled. The PPP has announced that they will fly black kites to oppose Modi’s visit.

“Purvanchal is facing the problem of backwardness, unemployment and hunger, and BJP, which has won all the seats of this area barring Azamgarh, has not done anything to address these problems,” PPP chief Anup Pandey said.

“This visit of the Prime Minister is aimed at garnering votes during the coming Assembly elections in the state and has got nothing to do with the plight of people in this region,” he alleged.

Meanwhile, local Samajwadi Party leaders have also decided to oppose Modi’s visit over Centre’s alleged apathy towards the development of the district.

A delegation of SP leaders, including Ambika Chowdhury and Narad Rai, on Sunday handed over a memorandum to district administration, demanding establishment of AIIMS and other developmental projects.

“The district has been ignored by the Centre. With the PM’s visit, we haven’t got any positive indication for start of any developmental project, which is why we are protesting his visit,” the memorandum said.

BJP MP Yogi Adityanath has, however, termed the protest as an act of “foolishness” and said the Prime Minister is coming here to launch a scheme related to free distribution of LPG connections to poor.

“May God give them (SP leaders) good sense so that they can understand what PM is doing,” he said earlier this week.


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