Lucknow/New Delhi, Jun 20: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Monday stepped up his attack on BJP over the issue of 'migration' of Hindus from Kairana, saying it was raising such "baseless" matters to "vitiate" the atmosphere in the poll-bound state.
Yadav's attack came even as senior BJP leader and Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu said "Kairana migration" will not be a main issue for the party in the Assembly polls in UP due next year and that it will fight on the development plank.
"The BJP raises baseless issues like Kairana since they have nothing to show in terms of development during their two years in power. They know if they debated on development, the SP government would lead, hence they resort to raise issues like Kairana to vitiate the UP atmosphere," Yadav said while addressing a gathering in Lakhimpur Kheri.
"The issue raised by BJP was found baseless on verification as some of the people there migrated 10 to 15 years back for employment or financial matter while others migrated on other issues and some were found dead," he said.
Naidu said the BJP will contest the assembly polls on the plank of development.
"Kairana migration would not be a main issue in UP polls. It is a law and order problem. The party would contest the election on the development plank," the Union Urban Development Minister said in Muzaffarnagar last evening.
BJP MP Yogi Adityanath said the alleged exodus of Hindus from Kairana was a result of pseudo-secularism and appeasement policies pursued by different governments in UP.
"Because of this, the population of Hindus which was once 68 per cent has come down to 8 per cent (in Kairana)," he alleged while addressing a Ram Katha programme in Basti.
Union minister Sanjeev Balyan, a senior BJP leader, claimed that some Muslim families besides those of Hindus have moved out of Kairana area due to law and order problem.
"First of all, I have not visited Kairana. Secondly, you all must have seen that there is law order issue in the state. It is better to look at it from that angle. As per my information, it is not only Hindus, there has been some migration of Muslims also," he told reporters in New Delhi.
Balyan, BJP's Lok Sabha MP from Muzaffarnagar, claimed that the "migration problem" was not only restricted to Kairana area in the state, adding that it was wrong to paint the whole issue with a "communal" brush.
"It is a law and order issue and the problem should not be connected with communalism," he said. He said that his comments were based on the information provided by a BJP team that had gone to assess the situation in Kairana last week.
"I have spoken with them (the team) and also to an MP from that place. They say migration was happening mainly due to law and order issue," he said.