Akhilesh reminds BJP of promise to provide laptops to students; ducks queries on bypolls

PTI | Lucknow | Updated: 01-07-2022 16:18 IST | Created: 01-07-2022 16:12 IST
Akhilesh reminds BJP of promise to provide laptops to students; ducks queries on bypolls
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav (File Photo/ANI) Image Credit: ANI
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Interacting with the media for the first time after the Samajwadi Party's defeat in the Lok Sabha polls, Akhilesh Yadav on Friday refrained from making any political comments except for reminding the state government about its old poll promise of giving laptops to students.

The SP chief ducked a volley of questions on the party's stunning loss in the two politically significant seats - Azamgarh and Rampur -- saying, ''Today's press conference is only on congratulating the children and on laptops.'' The BJP has taken away Azamgarh and Rampur Lok Sabha seats vacated by Yadav himself and senior SP leader Azam Khan, respectively, after getting elected as MLAs.

After the declaration of results on Sunday, Yadav and his party leaders had through statements and tweets accused the BJP government of winning the polls by ''misusing'' official machinery.

The media fired several questions at the SP supremo on the defeat in the polls and also ally Om Prakash Rajbhar's advice that he should come out of the air-conditioned room and work with the masses, but he refused to answer.

The SP chief distributed laptops to some students on his birthday and reminded the state government about its promise of providing laptops.

''Since we are not in power, we could give laptops only to a few children. And these are given so that the government is reminded of its old promise,'' he told reporters here.

As the then chief minister, Yadav had started a scheme under which laptops were given to the students, who cleared the high school and intermediate examinations, to encourage them for higher studies.

Over 16 lakh laptops were distributed by the Uttar Pradesh government from 2012 to 2016.

Yadav claimed that the BJP had made a similar promise ahead of the 2017 assembly elections, too, but did not fulfil it.

''I am giving you (the laptops) to remind the government. We can give these only to some people, but the government can give them to everyone,'' the SP chief added.

In its election manifesto 'Lok Kalyan Sankalp Patra 2022' for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls, the BJP had announced two crore tablets and smartphones under the Swami Vivekanand Yuva Shashaktikaran Yojana, if voted to power.

Yadav also demanded the government to grant two-wheelers to students.

In a lighter vein, the SP chief said he doesn't celebrate his birthday as ''those who celebrate should know that they lost a year (jo manate woh yad kar lein unka ek saal kum ho jaataa hai)''.

In a message to the students, he said hard work never goes unrewarded.

''A person, who works hard and toils, eventually gets the honor. People are looking toward you and society has hopes for you. A person who works hard moves ahead. But sometimes, there are others in society who get a chance. However, you are not among them.'' The SP supremo turned 49 on Friday.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath greeted Akhilesh Yadav on his birthday.

In a tweet in Hindi, Adityanath said, ''Best wishes to former Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav jee on his birthday.'' Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati and Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya, too, greeted Yadav on his birthday.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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