Power Minister Piyush Goyal now speaks of ‘Muslim Electricity’

In Uttar Pradesh, the Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal has been re-defining Green and Saffron power by alleging that the state government has denied power to Hindus



Photo courtesy: twitter.com/PiyushGoyal
Photo courtesy: twitter.com/PiyushGoyal

Biswajeet Banerjee

“There is no hop skip and jump when electricity flows through conductors. There is no mechanism by which you can give electricity to Muslims and deny the same to Hindus,” said a senior state government official today while debunking Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal’s claim made yesterday that the Uttar Pradesh Government had denied power supply to Hindus while routing it to Muslims.


“Like roads being used equally by Hindus and Muslims and all other communities, electricity is availed by everyone and all communities,” said AN Mishra, a senior power department official in Lucknow on Friday. "The allegation of the minister is wrong. Nowhere has electric connection been given on religious lines," maintained Mishra.


While addressing the media on Thursday, the Union Power Minister had alleged that Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav had distributed power connections in Uttar Pradesh on the basis of religion and given preference to Muslims over Hindus.


“BJP MP Sarvesh Kumar had lodged a complaint with Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) about discrimination in distribution of power connections on the basis of religion in Moradabad. After inquiry these charges were found to be correct,” Goyal had said.

“There is no hop, skip and jump when electricity flows through conductors. There is no mechanism by which you can give electricity to Muslims and deny the same to Hindus.”
AN Mishra, state govt official

How could a government talk about development if it gave preference to religion in distribution of power connection, Goyal had wondered.


“BJP has always been saying that SP thrives on appeasement of Muslims. It gave different compensation to Hindus and Muslims—the Muslims got more money while Hindus did not even get half of it. This is on record and anyone can verify it,” he said.


The electricity official was not impressed. “This allegation of the Union Minister is false." Mishra said. "Who conducted that inquiry and where? We have no information about anyone conducting any probe in any village in Moradabad district," he said.


The all-important question being asked is why the Union Minister raised this question days before the first phase of polling in western Uttar Pradesh on Saturday.

There seems to be a clear strategy by the BJP to communalise UP elections. A day earlier BJP MP Yogi Adityanath had claimed that only BJP could stop western UP from becoming another Kashmir. Both he and BJP president Amit Shah have spoken of so-called ‘Love jihad’ and the party has promised to form anti-Romeo squads if it is voted to power

Moradabad, where allegedly the SP government gave power to Muslims, will go to polls in the second phase on February 15.


Does this amount to a violation of the model code of conduct? And if so, what action can the Election Commission possibly take?


There seems to be a clear strategy by the BJP to communalise UP elections. A day earlier BJP MP Yogi Adityanath had claimed that only BJP could stop western UP from becoming another Kashmir. Both he and BJP president Amit Shah have spoken of so-called ‘Love jihad’ and the party has promised to form anti-Romeo squads if it is voted to power.

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Published: 10 Feb 2017, 7:06 PM