Former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Sunday accused the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party of failing to stem the rise in crimes and turning the state into “Hatya [Murder] Pradesh”, ANI reported.

Yadav mentioned how men allegedly stalking a Class 11 student killed her last week in the state’s Sultanpur district by driving a bike over her head. “If the crime rates are made public by the government, then it will be known that robbery, rape and murders have increased,” he claimed.

The Samajwadi Party leader’s comments came a day after he criticised the Adityanath-led BJP government of adopting a “divide and rule” policy to fuel political gains. “India was once called the country of snake charmers and it was considered the country’s real identity,” News18 quoted him as saying. “Unfortunately, today, our snake charmers are forced to live in poverty. They don’t even have land or any permanent means of livelihood.”

He also acknowledged rifts in the Samajwadi Party, and said it was in need of discipline and training. Yadav appealed to party workers to perform better than their opponents.