Lucknow: Midway to the 7-phased Uttar Pradesh state elections, senior BJP leader and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and other top party leaders are reportedly feeling "sorry" for their faliure to field a single Muslimm candidate in Uttar Pradesh.
According to a report by PTI, Union ministers Rajnath Singh, Uma Bharti and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi feel that the party could have given tickets to the community.
Uma Bharti even said that the BJP committed a mistake by not fielding any Muslim candidate.
"I am really feeling sorry that we could not field a Muslim. I spoke with (BJP President) Amit Shah and (state party President) Keshav Prasad Maurya about how we could have brought a Muslim to the assembly," she has said.
Rajnath had earlier said that Muslims should have been given tickets by the BJP in the ongoing Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections.
Naqvi, while reacting to the issue, had said, "As far as tickets are concerned, it would have been better if the tickets were given to Muslims. We will address their (Muslim party workers) concerns by compensating them when we form the government in the state."
The BJP leaders regret came a day after firebrand BJP MP Vinay Katiyar said "there is no point in giving tickets to Muslims when they don't vote for the party".
The minority cell of the BJP worked overtime for the past five years to establish close contact with Muslim voters. It had also undertaken membership drives, and also made efforts to reach out to a large section of the Muslim voters with an eye on the elections.
Muslims account for about 20% of the total population of Uttar Pradesh. In around 100 constituencies, Muslim population is more than 30%.
Interestingly, results of the recently concluded civic elections in Maharashtra showed that a good number of Muslims not only voted for the BJP, but wherever the party had fielded a Muslim candidate, the community made it sure that he or she won the elections.