Lucknow: Local newspapers are having the best of times in Uttar Pradesh as there is an advertisement galore , the current election in the state being crucial for all the three major players, the Bahujan Samaj Party, the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party.
While most of them are dull and dry, some others are innovative and eye-caching. A small advertisement given by a rebel Congress candidate stands out among them. In a few lines it explains almost everything including his nature, his fight and his predicament.
Maroof Men Jigar Hai, Is Baat Ki Lucknow ko Khbar Hai, reads the message in Hindi. Maroof (Khan) who is seeking election from the Lucknow central constituency has rightly said that he is a man who has guts, besides everything else. Only a few dare to fight like him with the party high command, especially in the party like the Congress where a family rules.
He was asked to withdraw in favour of the party's alliance partner, the SP, but he refused. He did not stop at that. Khan wrote a hard-hitting letter to party vice-president Rahul Gandhi expressing total disagreement with the seat sharing formula. He may not win as the SP has fielded a formidable candidate for the seat but he has made his stand clear.
The next line in the advertisement makes it absolutely clear. People in Lucknow know about it ( that I am a fighter) and will support " me him only for this reason", says he ,in the line that followed.
Another Khan, Arman, who is contesting from Lucknow west has done equally well . His only fault is that his one liner is not his. He has borrowed it from the Congress. Baate Kam, Kam Jyada will be his mantra like the late Prime Minister , Indira Gandhi's, says his ad.
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Some other candidates and star campaigners have heavily depended on Hindi movies to convey their messages. Wife of state chief minister Akhilesh Yadav, for example, has drawn inspiration from an Amitabh Bachchan starrer to ask Prime Minister Narendra Modi to keep away from the state-- Mere Angne Men Tumhara Kya Kam Hai ? asks the party MP from Kannauj.
Not to lag behind, her alliance partner (Congress) has also depended on films to attack Modi. He was a hero ( Shahrukh Khan) in the early part of his career as PM. Now. he has become a villain-- Gabbar Singh. His sister Priyanka would like to put a ban on adoption if the married couple has already got a child.
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For the first time the voters in the state are in for a different experience, In 200 polling booths the Election Commission has created a home-like atmosphere. Voters will be treated in these booths with coffee and snacks. Their children will find a playground nearby. The aim is to make them free from worries even if they have to stand in queue for a long time. These have been rightly called model booths.
As in the past, some top leaders are spreading falsehood to sail through. BSP supremo Mayawati, for instance, has told the electorate that Modi and Akhilesh will support each other and form a government in the state if none gets a majority. On the other hand Akhilesh has claimed that the BSP and BJP will form a post-poll alliance. There is no indication so far for either of the two.
These leaders seem to have drawn a leaf from Bihar leader Lalu Prasad Yadav's book. His party emerged as the largest single party due to one rumour he spread across the state that the saffron brigade will end reservation in government jobs for backward castes if the BJP is voted to power. He had twisted a statement made by RSS chief Vishnu Bhagwat on the issue.