Bihar: Pradeep Joshi, an independent candidate in Bihar election asked the Muslims to leave the meeting which he convened to canvas the voters. He clearly told that he does not need Muslim votes.
Joshi is posing a unique political challenge. He is not a BJP candidate but his ideology is more saffron than BJP. Even local leaders of BJP accuse him of being communal.
Joshi came to limelight in October 2005 when he defeated Iliyas Husain, former RJD minister by 43,000 votes. He was convicted in a criminal in 2010. At that time, his wife, Jyoti Rashmi contested elections and won the seat.
Joshi and his wife while campaigning asked whether there are any Muslims in the audience, “If so, please leave because we don’t want Muslim votes’’. Joshi belongs to Rashtriya Seva Dal. The BJP leaders consider him to be an extremist politician. They say that he pools votes by emotionally blackmailing people. They also say that such slogans have no place in the recent elections.
The grand alliance has again fielded the RJD’s Iliyas Hussain, a five-time MLA. A local voter, Soni (31) told that he is working for the Hindu-Muslim unity. Voters of the constituency no longer appreciate Joshi’s communal remarks.