BJP's Draupadi Poster in UP Sends Ominous Signals

Published on: April 16, 2016

A Poster Of UP BJP Chief, Keshav Maurya as Lord Krishna fires a controversy; it uses religious symbols as a start up to its campaign ten months before the state elections, signalling the possibility of a campaign intended to polarise the voter on religious lines




A poster of UP BJP president Keshav Prasad Maurya in Varanasi depicting him as ‘Lord Krishna’ and other politicians including Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav as ‘Kauravas’ blatantly violates the law on mis-using religion for political gain. (Section 123a and 123b of the Representation of People's Act). This law becomes operational once elections are announced and the elections in the state are at least ten months away. This could be interpreted as a shrewd plan to evade the law as the sangh parivar is want to do.

The sudden appearance of this over the past few days poster stoked a controversy with the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) accusing BJP of hurting the religious sentiments of the people and trying to tarnish the image of Yadavs! All the political opponents of the BJP are shown in the poster as responsible for the 'disrobing' of the 'pure' Draupadi.

Maurya, the newly appointed chief for the Sangh-driven Bharatiya Janata Party in the state, a man who has several criminal cases pending against him, is ironically shown as the righteous victor (sic) : with the Sudarshan Chakra trying to 'rescue' the state (UP).

The scene is a metaphorical portrayal of Mahabharata where Krishna rescues Draupati from attempts of the Kaurava brothers to dishonour her in the court.

This is not the first time that the BJP in UP has brazenly used religion and communally aggressive propaganda to polarise voters.