P. Ramabhadran says dalits will decide the outcome of the upcoming LS polls

State president of the Kerala Dalit Federation (KDF) P. Ramabhadran has said that the coming Lok Sabha elections will prove that the Dalits are a force to reckon with.

Mainstream political parties were under the impression that the Dalits were not capable of deciding the victor in an election. This would be proved wrong in the coming Lok Sabha elections, he said inaugurating a State-level leadership conference of the KDF here on Monday.

Mr. Ramabhadran said that each Member of Parliament was given Rs.5 crore annually for carrying out development work in their respective constituencies.

It was mandatory that 22 per cent of that be utilised for the welfare and development of the Dalit sections. But the reality was that a majority of MPs did not utilise even 2 per cent of the amount for the Dalits.

He alleged that some of the MPs from the State who had solicited the support of the KDF during the last Lok Sabha election were now totally ignoring the Dalits.

Mr. Ramabhadran was particularly critical of Wayanad MP M.I. Shanavas in this connection.

He said that it would be better for the United Democratic Front to hand over the Wayanad seat to a Socialist Janata Party candidate in the coming Lok Sabha elections. All political parties conveniently forgot the promises made in the election manifestoes.

If at least some of the promises had become a reality, the living conditions of the Dalits would have been much better, he said.

KDF State general secretary K.P.C. Kuttan presided.

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