Income Tax Raids Trigger Cartoon War Between SP, BJP In Uttar Pradesh

Income tax searches against politicians of the Samajwadi Party (SP) have emerged as the latest hotspot in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh (UP), with the governing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the major opposing party sparring over cartoons.

The Samajwadi Party also displayed a banner outside its Lucknow head office, claiming that the Samajwadi Party had Akhilesh and the Bhartiya Janata Party had central authorities.

Although the income tax office, which conducted a study on Samajwadi Party members regarded closest to party chief Akhilesh Yadav, stayed tight-lipped even after more than 36 hours of the process, the Samajwadi Party chief posted a cartoon on Monday that lead to the Bhartiya Janata Party's response.

The income tax department is said to have completed its investigation against Samajwadi Party national spokesman Rajiv Rai, however other leaders in Lucknow are still being investigated.

To hammer home his case that the income tax operation on his party members right before the polls was politically influenced, Akhilesh uploaded a cartoon on Twitter that showed - on campaign service - printed on a car of the income tax department. In the run-up to the 2022 Uttar Pradesh elections, Yadav's party has risen as the main opposition force attempting to prevent the ruling Bhartiya Janata Party from retaining power in the state's most populated state.

Also Read: In Goa, More Than Half Of Legislators Switched Sides Since 2017

Jainendra Yadav, Akhilesh Yadav's closest assistant, was among the Samajwadi Party officials whose homes were inspected. The state capital's Vishal Khand-Gomtinagar house was investigated. Party spokesman Rajiv Rai of Mau district's Sahadatpura and builder Manoj Yadav of Mainpuri's Punjabi Bagh neighbourhood, who is thought to be connected to the Samajwadi Party head and a Lucknow-based entrepreneur, were among those whose homes were inspected.

The governing party retaliated with a new cartoon depicting Akhilesh saying - Yogi is unfit, and yet as income tax investigators clutched a bird with the words - income mismatched to recognized income sources.

Income tax investigators were also seen carrying a briefcase with the words - on patriotic service printed on it. Even when major leaders from both the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Samajwadi Party spoke out over the searches, this tweet from the Bharatiya Janata Party became popular.

The Samajwadi Party has been rocked by income tax raids, according to Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. In reply, the Samajwadi Party leader accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of abusing federal agencies to obtain political advantage.

The biggest opposition party's claims against the administration, according to Adityanath, revealed a - shameful conscience.

He also claimed that certain individuals' wealth increased by 200 times during the SP's five-year tenure.

The raids were also supported by Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya. Even when the Samajwadi Party gained backing from various opposition parties on the subject, he claimed that only the corrupt fear it.

When questioned regarding the conclusions of the tax investigation on Samajwadi Party members, a tax officer who was not involved in the survey indicated that such assessments are normally a lengthy process.

According to a tax official, these investigations and assessments typically take a long time to complete, and there is a lengthy procedural component that covers the surveyed individuals' chequebooks and balance sheets.