Gujarat Elections: Arvind Kejriwal pledges Rs 40 per day for cow maintenance

Rajkot: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday pledged Rs 40 a day for the maintenance of every cow in Gujarat and a shelter for non-milking cattle in every district of the state if the Aam Aadmi party is voted to power. Kejriwal’s announcement is a renewed effort to thwart the ruling BJP in Gujarat and attract Hindu voters, according to political experts. The national convener of the Aam Aadmi party also claimed that the BJP and the opposition congress have united to “cut the AAP votes” as according to an “IB report” his party will form the next government in the state.

“In Delhi, we give Rs 40 per cow per day. The Government of Delhi gives Rs 20 and another Rs 20 is given by the municipal corporation. If the AAP is voted to power in Gujarat, then we will give Rs 40 per cow per day for their maintenance,” Kejriwal said at a press conference in Rajkot.

Panjrapole (cattle shelters) will be built in every district for non-milking cows and people roaming the road, Kejriwal said, also assuring that the AAP government will take all necessary steps for the benefit of the cows in the state. His announcement came at a time when panjrapole owners were protesting the Gujarat government over its alleged failure to release a package as promised for the shelters.

Asked about an auto rickshaw driver in Ahmedabad, whose house Kejriwal dined at, in support of the BJP, the AAP convener said he does not discriminate against people based on which party they support.

“Whether they are from Congress or BJP, they all invite me to dinner. I visit them without thinking about which party they vote for. They can vote for any party they want. If you call me before a meal, I won’t ask you which party you vote for,” he said.

Kejriwal said that if he is voted into power, the AAP will work for all people without discrimination based on the political party they belong to. He claimed that the BJP and Congress have come together in Gujarat in their bid to defeat AAP, and that Congress has been tasked with “eating the votes of the AAP”.

Kejriwal claimed a source told him about an “IB report” according to which, if the Gujarat Assembly elections are held today, the AAP will form a government in the state, but by a narrow margin.

“Since the report came out, these two parties have united. They are holding secret meetings and the BJP has panicked. Both parties are using the same language to abuse the AAP,” he claimed.

He went on to say that the BJP was trying to “strengthen Congress to divide the anti-BJP vote”.

“Congress has been given the responsibility to break AAP votes. Some congress leaders wanted to join the BJP, but the BJP asked them to stay in Congress so as not to weaken it further,” he claimed.

Kejriwal also claimed that the Congress will not win more than 10 seats in the 182-member Gujarat assembly, and they (winning congressional leaders) will also join the BJP.

“It is pointless to vote in Congress and not in the interest of Gujarat. Anyone who is angry with the BJP should vote for the AAP. I appeal to the people to work hard for the record of Delhi and Punjab ( of AAP’s victory in those states),’ he said.

Kejriwal further claimed that “Congress MLAs are in the BJP’s pocket”.

“BJP buys as many congressional MLAs as it needs and keeps others in stock. As we can see across the country, they have made a concerted strategy to defeat AAP,” the Delhi CM claimed.

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, who attended the press conference, claimed that the BJP followed the same strategy in Punjab. Kejriwal also claimed that an announcement of a 20,000 crore package by Prime Minister Narendra Modi would benefit contractors and ministers, but the public would get nothing.

“The public wants better education, jobs, lowering the cost of electricity and water and alleviating inflation. We have done this in Delhi and Punjab, and will do it in Gujarat,” he said.

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