The Purvanchal Expressway is now becoming the arena for the battle between the BJP and the Samajwadi Party in the upcoming Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh. A day after the BJP showcased the 341-kilometre-long expressway as its biggest achievement, the Samajwadi Party is gearing up to drive holes into the same.
Samajwadi Party national president Akhilesh Yadav has announced that he will take out the Vijay Rath Yatra on the Purvanchal Expressway from Ghazipur today. Akhilesh will also address a rally near the airstrip on the expressway. According to media reports, Akhilesh will hold several Sabhas (mmetins) at various points on the expressway. His Vijay Rath Yatra will move from Ghazipur to Lucknow.
The expressway passes through nine districts — Lucknow, Barabanki, Amethi, Sultanpur, Faizabad, Ambedkar Nagar, Azamgarh, Mau and Ghazipur.
The SP chief’s yatra is being organised a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the expressway and made a political slugfest in the poll-bound state. Addressing a public meeting yesterday, PM Modi accused the previous governments (SP and BSP) in Uttar Pradesh of letting poverty and the mafia take over the state’s eastern part. He said that the BJP government is now writing a new chapter of development there.
The Samajwadi Party, while trying to take credit for the expressway, slammed the BJP for unveiling projects that were built by the previous government. Some workers of the Samajwadi Party even cycled on the expressway at various points and showered flowers on it.
Akhilesh Yadav said that the SP government completed the Agra Expressway within 22 months whereas the BJP government is inaugurating an incomplete Purvanchal Expressway. He even said that the people are aware that quality has been compromised in the making of the expressway and will not be misled.
BSP president Mayawati too has also taken a plunge into the expressway battle. “The BJP is trying to take credit for the Purvanchal Expressway which is not correct. The plan of the expressway project to connect Noida in west UP with the districts of eastern UP was prepared when the BSP was in power. Due to the hurdles put by the then Congress government at the Centre, the project could not be launched,” she said.