NEW DELHI: Amid Opposition parties' vigorous attempts to woo Brahmins in Uttar Pradesh ahead of the assembly polls next year, Union minister Ashwini Kumar Choubey Tuesday said they will not succeed in "luring" the community which will back the BJP as it has been working to "promote" Indian culture and national interest.
"Brahmins are not a caste but a value system. They have always worked to promote Indian culture and national interest, and will stand with a party which does it," he told reporters in the Parliament complex.
He likened Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the Maurya dynasty king Chandragupta, and said Brahmins will support him in the same way as Chanakya had backed the ancient king.
A Brahmin teacher, Chanakya is famous for his political treatise Arthashastra and is credited for crafting strategy to topple the Nanda Empire and bring Chandragupta to power.
Some Brahmin leaders, including Choubey, of the BJP had also held a meeting recently as they deliberated on various ways to keep the community in the party's fold.
While the community, estimated to constitute Uttar Pradesh's 11 per cent population, has traditionally backed the BJP, Opposition parties have been reaching out to it ahead of the polls.
Bahujan Samaj Party has announced a series of Brahmin meets, the first being in Ayodhya on July 23.
The Samajwadi Party and the Congress have also taken measures to woo them, alleging that the community has been ignored by the Yogi Adityanath government.
Taking a swipe at the BSP, Choubey alleged that its leaders have "abused" Brahmins in the past and made light of the Opposition's attempts to woo them.
He said he has been working to build statues of Parshuram and have a university named after the saint.
Choubey, considered a staunch Hindutva leader, represents Bihar's Buxar Lok Sabha constituency, which borders UP.