BJP National President Shri Amit Shah visited Gujarat on 31 May, 2017 to participate in party’s ‘Vistarak’ initiative, an exercise aimed at establishing direct contact with the people of the state. Under this initiative, around 48,000 BJP Vistaraks visited each of the 48,000 polling booths across the state of Gujarat to canvass for the party between 28 May and 5 June. These Karyakartas also educated the people about the pro-people schemes launched by the BJP-ruled state as well as the Centre.
Those who joined as Vistaraks during this programme include party National President Shri Amit Shah, Gujarat Chief Minister Shri Vijay Rupani, Deputy Chief Minister Shri Nitin Patel, State Party In-Charge Shri Bhupender Yadav and several other state leaders, MPs, MLAs and Ministers in state government. While some of the prominent leaders, like Shri Amit Shah, Shri Vijay Rupani and Shri Nitin Patel worked as Vistarak for one day i.e. on May 31, 2017 and visited a booth in tribal dominated Chhota Udepur district, other leaders reached out to people on all the days between 28 May and 5 June.
Vistarak programme at Devaliya village
As part of the Vistarak (expansion) programme the BJP President visited Devaliya village in Chhota Udepur district and held door-to-door meetings. Villagers welcomed Shri Amit Shah by offering him an arrow and a bow. Later, the BJP President also had lunch at the house of a tribal party Karyakarta Popat Rathva.
Addressing party Karyakartas on the occassion, Shri Shah said, “When Narendra Modi was Chief Minister of Gujarat we won 127 seats. Now, he is our PM, our gift for him will be to win more than 150 Assembly seats and for that we have to win all tribal area seats of Gujarat.”
He said, “The Modi government has launched more than 106 schemes for the people, and it is our job to take those schemes to the needy, irrespective of caste and creed”.
During Shri Shah’s visit, Sarpanch Soniyabhai Rathva (49), who was with the Congress for 30 years, joined the BJP. “I joined BJP to do development work for my village,” Rathva said after his joining.
Seeking to break the Congress’ hold on the tribal belt of eastern Gujarat ahead of the state Assembly polls, Shri Shah said Congress shows only unfulfilled dreams to the tribals.
Interaction in Bodeli
During his interaction with a group of tribal leaders on the campus of the Swami Narayan temple in Bodeli, the BJP President hailed the ruling BJP in Gujarat, for bringing development to tribals in the last 22 years.
He said, “Congress has only shown you dreams. Dreams that are not realized are called Sheikh Chilli (a folk tale character) dreams”.
He said the Modi government at the Centre has launched as many as 106 programmes in the last three years and has worked for upliftment of the poor in tune with the ‘Antyodaya’ philosophy of Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay.
In the last 22 years, the state BJP government has done everything for the tribal population which the Congress never did, Shri Shah said while appealing to the tribal community to help BJP register a bigger victory in upcoming polls.
Shri Shah said people have not defeated BJP since 1995, and we are here to request you to help BJP, so that the party could get maximum seats.
Attacking the Congress, he said the party is only interested in paying lip service to Dalits and Adivasis. “Congress only talks about Dalits, tribals and of social inclusion, but what happened during the Congress rule is all for you to see. No power, no water, no road, no health centres. There used to be curfews for months and unemployment was at its peak,” he said launching a broadside against the Congress.
Shri Shah said the Modi government in 2001 ensured a 24-hour power supply to the smallest and remotest villages, and also got schools constructed in villages while appointing teachers. He said health services improved under the BJP government through dial 108 ambulances and public health centres. “The government’s ‘Adivasi Vikas Yojana’ has taken development to all tribal villages. Water has been made available to the tribal populace. 1.70 crore acres of land has been given to 80,000 tribals in the state and Gram Sabhas have got right over the forest produce,” Shri Shah added.
He said the government is committed to preserve the tribal culture and has constructed a tribal museum and a tribal university. “I will get tired if I have to name all the schemes that the Modi government has launched for the poor after coming to power at the Centre. Tribals will get benefit of all such programmes,” he added.
He said, “We have decided to take BJP’s ideology and strengthen its organisation at village level as part of ‘Vistarak’ (outreach) programme. In Gujarat alone, a total 48,000 party workers will go door to door to explain party’s programmes, our government’s work at central and state level…No party would have undertaken such an exercise. And right here, you can see party workers from booth level right up to the national level,” he said.
He praised PM Narendra Modi’s leadership as a matter of pride for the party and exhorted 225 members from the village to take the message of the party to every person.
Interaction with Karyakartas at Sabarmati Riverfront
Addressing BJP workers at Sabarmati Riverfront in Ahmedabad, Shri Shah said, “After 325 seats in UP, go out with confidence that we will get more than 150 seats in Gujarat.”
Shri Amit Shah said, “Narendrabhai no vijayrath November ma Gujarat aavse (Narendra Modi’s victory run will reach Gujarat in November).”
Listing several development programmes and development work by Shri Modi as Gujarat Chief Minister and then the Prime Minister, Shri Shah said, “Before the BJP’s win in 1995 in Gujarat, there used to be curfew for 200 days in a year and in Ahmedabad Begum-Baadshah used to rule. But the BJP drove away those who used to stab.”
He added that it was under Congress rule that seeds of communalism, casteism and politics of vote bank were sown.
In his hour-long speech, Shri Shah focused on motivating BJP supporters to work for a huge win in Gujarat. He took a dig at the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), which has announced it will contest all assembly seats in Gujarat. “Do you know AAP? They surface whenever the elections are announced and disappear with results.”
The Gujarat BJP had painted the city in saffron to welcome Shri Amit Shah, who started a two-day visit to his home state for the first time after the party’s spectacular win in UP. After a grand felicitation at the airport, he held a brief meeting with party functionaries. u