Madhya Pradesh Congress chief Kamal Nath has written an “open letter” to Lord Shiva, seeking divine intervention for ending the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP government’s “misrule” in the state.
The letter, released to the media on Friday, had the state opposition leader urging Lord
Mahakaleshwar – an avatar of the Hindu god – to help the people of Madhya Pradesh vote out the BJP in the upcoming assembly polls. He went on to allege that farmers were committing suicide, girls were being raped, and both corruption and unemployment were rampant under the existing government. The state Congress chief also asserted that many promises made by chief minister Chouhan remained unfulfilled, and the time had come for him to pay for his “misdeeds”.
The Mahakaleshwar temple in Ujjain accommodates one of the 12 ‘jyotirlingas’ (shrines considered as the most sacred abodes of Lord Shiva) in the country.
However, state BJP spokesperson Rajnish Agrawal made light of the open letter, quipping that there was no need for Nath to write to the deity as he already knew everything.
Earlier in the day, the main opposition party had announced a public awareness campaign that would tread the same route taken by the chief minister during his upcoming Jan Ashirwad Yatra.
The yatra, which will have Chouhan “seeking the blessings of the people”, is slated to be flagged off by BJP president Amit Shah from Ujjain on Saturday. The Congress said its awareness campaign, held to highlight the “failures” of the state government, will pass through the very assembly segments expected to be covered by the chief minister during his yatra.
“The Congress will launch an awareness campaign from Tarana in Ujjain district on July 18. Kamal Nath will launch this ‘jan jagran abhiyaan’, and it will track the route of Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s Jan Ashirwad Yatra,” said Jitu Patwari, working president of the state Congress.
Patwari said the Congress campaign was aimed at exposing the BJP’s 15-year-long reign over the state. “The state’s debt burden has gone up to Rs 1.90 lakh crore. Over 90% farmers are unable to repay their debt, and are being forced to commit suicide. Several scams took place in the state over the last 15 years,” he alleged.
The Congress leader also accused the BJP of deceiving the people of the state by making false promises. “Replying to one of my questions in the assembly, the government admitted that over 4,500 promises of the chief minister were not fulfilled. After making false promises, they are now taking out a yatra on an expensive chariot,” said Patwari, who is also an MLA from Rau in Indore district.
The state BJP spokesperson downplayed the Congress’ decision to launch the awareness campaign too, alleging that the Congress had failed on every front – including its responsibilities as an opposition party. “Shivraj Singh is a popular leader, under whose leadership the BJP government has ensured all-round development of the state,” he said. “The Congress has no leader with widespread public acceptance like Shivraj-ji. This is why the party is resorting to gimmickry.”
(With PTI inputs)