Lucknow: Akhilesh Yadav, the leader of the Samajwadi Party, called Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath "useless" or "unupyogi," citing incidents of violence against Dalits and women during his tenure.
He made the remark in a tweet, playing on the Hindi word "Up-Yogi" (useful), which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had used earlier in the day to refer to him. Modi coined a new slogan, "UP plus Yogi bahut hai upyogi," in a public address in Shahjahanpur, to praise Adityanath for "eliminating mafias" and undertaking developmental work in the state.
"The daughter of Hathras, the farmers of Lakhimpur, the trader of Gorakhpur, women who are feeling insecure, unemployed youths, Dalits, and the backward class (people) are saying for UP, the current government is not useful, it is useless," Akhilesh said in a tweet. 'UP is saying today that it does not want the BJP,' he added.
Akhilesh led the state's Samajwadi Party government from 2012 to 2017, and was succeeded by Yogi Adityanath. The war of words between the BJP and the SP raged on ahead of the state's crucial assembly elections, which are scheduled for early next year. Modi was speaking at a rally after laying the groundwork for the 594-kilometer-long Ganga Expressway in UP's Shahjahanpur district. The BJP has already designated Adityanath as its candidate in the upcoming elections.