A BJP leader has offered a curious mathematical breakdown for Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s “80 vs 20” comment in which he said 80 per cent people in the state support BJP while 20 per cent oppose it – a comment widely seen as pitting the state’s 80 per cent Hindu population against the 20 per cent minorities.
The numbers cited by the Chief Minister roughly correspond to the ratio of Hindus to Muslims in UP, where assembly elections are due next month. Uttar Pradesh has 79.73 per cent of Hindu population, Muslim population is at 19.26 per cent, Christians are 0.18 per cent and Sikhs are at 0.32 per cent, according to the census.
“It’s not the Muslims that Yogi had talked about, I will give you the details of the 20%. This 20% consists 9 per cent of criminals and anti-social elements, 3.5% are land grabbers, 2% are those who commit atrocities against women, people who are pro-Pakistan are 2%, people who are against ‘Vande Mataram’ are 1.5%. These people consist of that 20 per cent,” said BJP’s Alok Vats on NDTV’s Trending Tonight show.
When NDTV’s Sanket Upadhyay pressed him on the source of his data, he shot back: “Social study, living in the society you can make out who these people are.”
“Which social study, bhaiya?” burst out Congress spokesperson Supriya Srinate, a panelist on the show, to which the BJP leader angrily replied, “Why are you laughing and relating it to Muslims? When did he (Yogi Adityanath) say that?”
Yogi Adityanath’s controversial statement came during an event in state capital Lucknow when he was asked a question about Brahmin votes in UP.
“The contest has moved much ahead. “The fight is now 80 versus 20,” he said.
“80 per cent is those who are supporters of nationalism, good governance and development. Such people will vote for the BJP and those who are against this and supporters of mafias and criminals, anti-farmer and village, such 15-20 people will take a different path. So, in this 80-20 fight, it is the lotus that will show the way,” the Chief Minister added, referring to the BJP’s election symbol.
Uttar Pradesh will go to polls in seven phases starting from February 10. Votes will be counted on March 10.