BJP's Jal Shakti minister in the outgoing cabinet, Baldev Singh Aulakh, addressing a "victory rally" after narrowly winning Rampur's Bilaspur assembly seat by 307 votes, said "Muslims didn't back BJP, hence bulldozer will run faster now". Aulakh, who defeated Samajwadi Party's (SP) Amarjit Singh, said, "We wanted to support them (Muslims), but they did not back us. We had been witnessing a lack of Muslim support and this time, too, they didn't leave any space for us."
He further said, "A large section of the Muslim population benefited from schemes of the BJP government. We provided ration, medical treatment, houses, etc, to all, including Muslims, yet they tried their best to defeat the BJP. Now, we'll have to think about them."
The BJP leader's statement has stirred up a huge controversy, with some members of the minority community expressing apprehension that they will be left out of welfare measures by the UP government in future. But as if that was not enough, BJP's Ritesh Kumar Gupta, who won from neighbouring Moradabad city, said, "Hooliganism won't be accepted...We have bulldozers for goondas. SP has been using Muslims as instruments (sic) while the BJP never discriminates. Muslims benefited from the government schemes in my constituency."
Slamming Aulakh's remarks, SP MP from Sambhal Dr Shafiqur Rehman Barq said, "BJP leaders should know that democracy does not mean indecency, dishonesty and bad manners. Yogi (Adityanath) must watch what his party members are saying. Such comments are clearly against the Constitution. I urge the judiciary to take note." The word "bulldozer" was frequently used by CM Yogi during his election campaign to remind voters of the SP's "poor" law and order record and how "ill-gotten properties had been bulldozed" by his administration.