Madhya Pradesh Panchayat Minister Mahendra Singh Sisodia has asked Congress leaders in the state to join the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party ahead of civic polls or face bulldozer action, a video shared on social media showed on Thursday.

“Move over to this side,” Sisodia said at a gathering in Ruthiyai town of Guna district on Wednesday, according to PTI. “In 2023 [when Assembly polls are scheduled in the state] too, the BJP will form a government in Madhya Pradesh…Mama’s bulldozer is ready.”

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is popularly known as “mama”, or maternal uncle.

There is no legal provision to destroy the property of anyone accused of an offence, but BJP governments have been increasingly dispensing “bulldozer justice” by conducting demolition drives under the guise of removing encroachments. Most of these drives were targeted at properties owned by Muslims.

Chouhan has hailed the practice as a symbol of his government’s “zero tolerance” towards criminals.

Meanwhile, Guna district Congress chief Harishankar Vijaywargiya on Thursday asked Sisodia to exercise restraint. “The people of Raghogarh will give a befitting reply to him on January 20 in the [Raghogarh Nagar civic] polls,” he said.

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