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Published On:01 October 2012
Posted by Indian Muslim Observer

SPECIAL REPORT: Communal riots negate partial welfare schemes in Uttar Pradesh

Development without security of minorities is meaningless

By Mohammad Shahid Parvez

Lucknow: As the Samajwadi Party government led by its young Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav completes its six months in office the hopes of people with it of a state with a minimum crime and law and order problem and all round development is gradually giving way to despair. Six major communal riots in as many months, besides scores of minor skirmishes and other crimes in as many months, deteriorating power situation in the state and some thoughtless decisions which had to be revoked have shown the government and the young Chief Minister in poor light. As if not enough, irresponsible actions and statements by some senior ministers and resentment over government failure to nominate chairpersons of the corporations among aspirants have added to the misery of the Chief Minister.

A series of communal riots during the first six months of the Samajwadi Party government belies the official claim of improvement in law and order during this period in the state. While claiming decline in crimes like dacoity, rape and molestations in during the period from March16-August15 this year as compared to the corresponding period last year, the official claim is silent over communal riots that took place during this period. The administration boasts of arresting dozens of noted criminals but does not mention as to how many real culprits behind the riots, some of whom are allegedly ministers in the Government and MLAs, have been brought to book so far. Riots in Mathura, Pratapgarh, Bareilly and Ghaziabad in which Muslims, like in all riots in the past, were the target of police has not endeared the Akhilesh Government to the community that voted the Samajwadi Party to power. Though the Chief Minister took action suspending and transferring district officials he did not get time to visit any of the riot-hit areas to instill confidence among the people, particularly the victims. He also did not take any action against his minister from Pratapgarh who the Muslims alleged was behind the riots in the district.

Even though the government has launched or announced some welfare schemes promised by the party in its election manifesto but it has failed to implement in totality even a single scheme so far. Even flagship schemes like free laptops and tablets to students, scholarship to girl students under Kanya Vidya Dhan , saris and blankets for BPL women and elderly persons and elderly and unemployment allowance are yet to go full throttle in the state. Besides, reservation which has been a long-pending demand of Muslims and status of Urdu are the issues on which the government is maintaining stoic silence. The Samajwadi Party promised 18 percent reservation for minorities if voted to power and was a bitter critic of the Congress when it announced only 4.5 percent quota to the community. Now six months in office the party is yet to take any step in that direction. Similarly land acquisition policy, farmers’ loan waiver, sari and blankets to the poor and other such schemes are yet to take off.

But the problem with the government is that the young Chief Minister is heading the old team of his father Mulayam Singh Yadav which has 19 ministers with criminal records. The young Chief Minister is yet to come out of his father’s shadow whose stamp is visible even in administrative reshuffle. Besides the two senior most ministers- Azam Khan and Akhilesh’s uncle Shivpal Yadav who wanted Mulayam to take over the reigns are not able to accept a young and inexperienced Akhilesh as their boss. Azam- Akhilesh strained relations can be gauged from the fact that the former skipped the grand function organized to distribute unemployment allowance. Shivpal Yadav who allegedly wanted Mandi Parishad, besides the PWD and Irrigation portfolios he presently holds, but was refused expressed his resentment by holding Janata Darshan parallel to that of Akhilesh. Even the day and timings were the same. To placate him he was given additional charge of flood control and cooperative but even that failed to pacify him.

Apart from the tug of war among the senior ministers it appears that all is not well in the party.

Several second rank leaders who campaigned with Akhilesh for the party during elections and were promised proper rewards feel neglected. One such leader on condition of anonymity told this Correspondent that his ticket to contest Assembly elections was cancelled on the promise that he would be compensated suitably if the party comes to power. However after six months into the government he has not got anything but hollow promises. Another such leader echoed similar sentiments when he said that promises made to the party cadres, particularly belonging to Muslim community, at the election time are forgotten no sooner than the polling is over. It is said that the party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav is sitting over the long list of aspirants for the chairmanship of the corporations but is delaying the nomination for fear of causing resentment among those who would be left out. But the delay is causing even more resentment.

Even if we accept the government's claim that the state was on the path of development the law and order situation and power supply position are certainly not up to the mark. With so many riots and scores of other smaller skirmishes within a few months has certainly not gone well with the people, particularly the Muslims on whose vote Samajwadi Party rode to power in the state.

With 2014 parliamentary elections in sight, it is time for the Akhilesh to act. It is time for the new Chief Minister to ensure security of the minorities and the weaker sections and identify those behind communal riots and other kind of violence and bring them to justice irrespective of their position. It is necessary because development without security and justice is meaningless and sooner the Chief Minister realizes this, the better.

[Mohammad Shahid Parvez is former News Editor, National Herald, Lucknow. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Uttar Pradesh). He can be contacted at mshahidparvez@gmail.com]

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Posted by Indian Muslim Observer on October 01, 2012. Filed under , , , , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Feel free to leave a response

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