Taking cue from Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Uttar Pradesh CM Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday told voters at a rally in the state to accept money given as bribe by other political parties, but vote only for the Samajwadi Party. This remark could land him in trouble with the Election Commission, like in the case of Kejriwal and Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.
"I heard that voters are being given money. My advice to you is to keep the money and vote for the bicycle (Samajwadi Party's election symbol)," Yadav said while addressing a rally in Bhadohi district.
The EC had, in February, ordered the poll authorities in Goa to file a police complaint against Delhi CM and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Kejriwal for making similar comments at an election rally in Goa.
The EC had also issued a notice to Parrikar after it was alleged that the defence minister had, during a poll rally in Goa, said: "You vote him by taking Rs 2,000 from someone. It is okay, somebody will hold a rally, there is no objection, someone roams there with Rs 500. But vote shall be for lotus." The poll panel had asked Parrikar to be extra careful while making such statements in the future when the Model Code of Conduct is in force.
Yadav also challenged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to list every work he has done in the state. "I told you about 10 works done by my government. Can he (Modi) list 10 works? I am ready to give the performance report of my five year government. But, he should give the report of three years of rule at the Centre," the Uttar Pradesh CM said.
Six phases of polling in the state have been carried out, while campaigning for the last phase is currently going on.
On Saturday, PM Modi also held his road-show in Varanasi and visited Jaunpur district to address an election rally before returning to Varanasi to address a huge gathering at the Town Hall.
Akhilesh Yadav and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi also held a joint road-show in Varanasi, while Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati addressed a gathering in Varanasi, not too far away from the road-show. The last phase of polls will be held on Wednesday. Varanasi, which is PM Modi's constituency, will vote too.